Thursday, May 27

All the Empty Chairs

photo by eschipul on

Memorial Day…

…originally known as Decoration Day as it was a day to honor the Civil War dead by decorating their graves. First observed on May 30, 1868 by proclamation of General John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of former sailors and soldiers.

Part of his proclamation says…

“What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foe? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their death a tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance.

“All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the Nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and found mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten, as a people, the cost of free and undivided republic…

“Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation’s gratitude,--the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan.”

Young people today probably do not know that Memorial Day used to be a solemn day, honoring those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom. Businesses closed for the day. Parades were held. Speeches and prayers were offered up at cemeteries. People took flowers and flags to the gravesites of those heroes who died in service for their country. In a few places, these things still take place out of respect and honor.

A hero is one who puts himself or herself in harm’s way to protect someone he/she doesn’t even know, who puts his/her life on the line that you and I can live in safety. And usually with little thanks.

The next time you see one of our nation’s heroes in uniform stand and applaud him/her. Give him/her a big hug or pat on the back. Give that one your heartfelt thanks for protecting your homeland.

I hope you will take time to view this video. I know you will be blessed…

Please pray for all the families of our fallen service men and women who leave behind empty chairs for their families. And pray for all those troops now deployed in harm’s way that they will return safely to their homes and loved ones.

Pray that there will be no more empty chairs.

On Sunday, I’ll also be over be at Daily Signs of Hope. I hope you will take time to visit Michael Clark and Douglas Bolton.

10 Responses
  1. Lee Hiller Says:

    Beautiful post! The fallen and their families are never out of our hearts.
    They are honored everyday

    We Love You Lynn!
    Lee and Rick

  2. Thank you for reminding me, Lynn, that the price of freedom is everything for some. Someone else paid the cost of both our spiritual freedom and our national freedom. We have not earned what we take so much for granted.

    Be blessed,


  3. Anonymous Says:

    This is perhaps the most important blog entry yet, Lynn. Lee and I grew up during the turbulent confusing 60s, where what the military did/does for our country was not appreciated. It was not until we began losing friends from the Viet Nam War that we began to fully understand. Now in more seasoned adulthood, we are watching our friends children, young adults come home wounded (many not come home at all); all in the name of defending us, people they do not even know. We know the value of our military heroes; and they are all heroes in our minds. That is why Lee and I give whenever we can to which benefits the families of lost ones to wars. It also reminds us that we should remember them every day, not just Memorial Day. Thanks. Love Rick and Lee

  4. Our town has a short parade--veterans. Then there is a band concert and speeches from the old courthouse steps. The American Legion puts out a bazillion flags in the cemetery.

    Beautiful history lesson and reminder. Touching video. Thank you!

  5. Thanks to all the men and women who serve our country so selflessly! We appreciate your sacrifice on our behalf!

    May God keep you safe and surround you with comfort in your darkest hours.

  6. I agree. Thanks to all the men and women who serve.

  7. Melanie Says:

    Beautiful! Thank you for this post! I am so happy to find your blog! I am now a 'follower' and can't wait to read more of your posts!

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    ~ ~

  8. Peter P Says:

    Wonderful post.

    It so saddens me that people turn days like this into just a good excuse to have a day off of work and relax, when it's purpose is something far nobler and greater.

  9. Absolutely, anyone who does not remember and consider the sacrifice many men and women--including several relatives of all of us, I don't doubt--doesn't deserve to be called an American patriot.

    Though I'm usually reluctant to fight anyone myself (I'd never make a good soldier), I do appreciate the effort of those who do. Thank you, one and all.

    ~ VT

  10. Thank you for this heartfelt post, Lynn. I come away from your blog so blessed each time.