Memorial Day is a holiday in the United States observed on the last Monday in May.
Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates American men and women who have died in military service. According to Wikipedia, Decoration Day was first observed on May 30, 1868. The alternate name Memorial Day was first used in 1882. It was declared an official name by federal law in 1967.
On June 28, 1968, the United States Congress passed the Uniform Holidays Bill, which moved three holidays from their traditional dates to a specific Monday to create a convenient three-day weekend. The change moved Memorial Day from its traditional May 30 date to the last Monday in May. The law came into force in 1971.
I well remember when I was a child the great efforts made by the communities to observe the Decoration Day. Cemeteries and cemeteries were mowed and trimmed well in advance, and graves were decorated with beautiful flowers.
Decorating Day was first observed in honor of the Civil War dead. The celebration of the day was expanded after World War I.
Many people observe this holiday by visiting cemeteries and memorials. Over the years, many have chosen this day to honor all the dead, not just those who died in military service.
Some Americans view Memorial Day as the unofficial start of summer and Labor Day as the unofficial end of the season. Unfortunately, for a growing number of Americans, Memorial Day is seen as just another paid holiday.
It is vitally important to the health of a free society that we remember – that we remember who we are, that we remember our journey as a nation, that we remember that our freedom has a not insignificant price. We must remember that thousands and thousands of lives have been cut short for the cause of freedom. We must never forget their bravery
This Memorial Day week, I will be visiting the graves of my grandparents. They were soldiers in a different struggle. But they were soldiers, good soldiers.
My grandmother, Amy Manning McCall, was one of the sweetest, kindest people I’ve ever known. Hugging her was like hugging a big down pillow. I never heard her say a mean word.
My grandfather, DT McCall, had a cunning and cantankerous side. If I ever met a born salesman, it was DT McCall. He had the know-how, the drive, the creativity, the optimism, the desire to solve the customer’s problem, the spizzerinctum, all great salespeople. He was the toughest man I have ever met. I will honor his memory this week.
My grandmother, Lena Bradford Brim, was a short, bowlegged woman. In the Riddleton community of old, she was known to all as Miss Lena.
She was a great seamstress, an even better cook…and well into her 90s, she could do crossword puzzles with the best of them. If she’s said it once, she’s said it a thousand times: “Be big or small, do it well or not at all.” »
My grandfather, Will Herod Brim, known to many as John Reuben, died on November 12, 1963. The last 58 years seem a blur. But my memories of him are still vivid. I’ll be recalling my favorites this Memorial Day week.
I’ve always maintained that Middle Tennessee was a great place to grow up.
There were so many good people that I remember.
And I could write a book about my late father and mother, Mary Helen Brim McCall and Frank T. McCall, but I’ll save that for another day.
This Memorial Day, don’t pass up the opportunity to offer prayers of thanks for those you’ve known and loved.
Copyright 2021 by Jack McCall