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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Memorial Day

We haven't been in the United States for Memorial Day since 1998, 17 years ago! And because Sweden doesn't commemorate a Memorial Day, we have often lost track of this holiday weekend in the US. In many ways, it's the weekend that kicks off the summer season. Unfortunately the weather here in MN is not very summery...rain, rain, rain. But even more to the point, it is the day when Americans pause to remember those who have lost their lives in service to their country. Not to be confused with Veterans Day, November 11, Memorial Day commemorates those who died while serving in the military while Veterans Day honors all who have served in the military at one time or another.
Memorial Day is tomorrow. Tonight on television, an annual concert is broadcast from Washington D.C. that commemorates some of the stories of those who have lost their lives and to take a look at the US history as it relates to our war history. We had no idea about this concert but it is an annual event for Doug's parents. It's beautiful and sorrowful. It's never easy to be confronted with the carnage and death that the wars have wrought on people's lives, but it's good to give pause around this holiday and recognize that sacrifice has been a big part of the life that I enjoy today.
While the show was good, the very best part of the night was when Doug's dad snuck away for a minute and returned with his naval hat from the time he served in the Navy from 1951-1955! It was a great moment for us all! He was singing along with the naval hymn and clearly felt a sense of honor as we watched the concert,
These are the moments when being back in the United States is a real blessing. It's good to connect with our culture, our holidays, the remembrances and special events that shape our nation. I'm very glad that we are here in MN for this holiday so Doug's parents could introduce us to the Memorial Day concert from Washington D.C. And so that we could enjoy a lovely, fun memory of Paul's service to our country.