Happy Memorial Day
Memorial Day was known as Decoration Day when I was a child. The Veterans sold Buddy Poppies and I was always thrilled when my Grandfather bought one for me. They were red silk flowers with a tag attached. I think the connection between heroin and poppies ended that custom.
Decoration Day began to honor the Civil War dead. My maternal great grandfather's fought in the Civil War in the Ohio regiment so this was a very meaningful day for my grandparents. Grandpa's dad took a ball (bullet) in the elbow and was unable to bend that arm the rest of his life. Grandma's dad was wounded and taken prisoner by the South. He was not expected to live and so the Rebels gave him back to the Yankees. He lived, but was never very well after the war.
Instead of picnics, the importance of this day was one of honoring the dead and my grandmother tended the graves of the departed family members. She bought masses of flowers and I always thought it was a shame that we couldn't have them at home instead of leaving them in front of monuments. The dead can't smell.
While you are enjoying a day off and families are gathering for fun and food, take time to remember the Veterans who died to make our freedom possible.