I didn’t always understand the importance of this holiday. When I was eight-years-old, I wished my grandfather a “Happy Memorial Day!” I thought it was the proper thing to do. After all, people said, “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Easter” on those holidays.
So, what was wrong with what I said?
It was a day to show appreciation.
My grandfather wasn’t the only veteran in my family. My father and his father also served our country, and all were lucky enough to return home. So did cousins and friends over the years. But my uncle did not. He was 30 years old when he died. A newlywed.
But his story isn’t unique.
There are thousands of similar stories—about loved ones that lost their lives making sure the rest of us could enjoy the benefits of freedom. And so today I remember my grandfather’s words and I’m grateful to all those that have and will serve our country.
I raise a toast and celebrate you—our American heroes.
Sandy Goldsworthy is the author of the YA series, The Afterworld Saga. She received her bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh. She manages corporate promotions by day and drafts paranormal fantasy stories by night. Sandy resides in southeastern Wisconsin. She and her husband have two children and an English Mastiff.