Today I went again to the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton, GA. The flags were at all the graves. Family and friends had left flowers for all those who been buried at the cemetery.
Visiting the Georgia National Cemetery is a time for families to tell the stories of their family and close friends who gave of their lives for our freedoms to their children, so that they too will understand what Memorial Day is all about.
Many headstones had multiple flower arrangements. This one also had a Challenge Coin. A challenge coin is a small coin or medallion (usually military), bearing an organization’s insignia or emblem and carried by the organization’s members. Traditionally, they are given to prove membership when challenged and to enhance morale. In addition, they are also collected by service members. In practice, challenge coins are normally presented by unit commanders in recognition of special achievement by a member of the unit. They are also exchanged in recognition of visits to an organization.
Flower, coins, military airborne patches, an American flag and hand drawn art adorn this grave. This is where you see the impact of service that it has on the whole community. Comrades leave the patches. Coins for those to remember whom also served with them. Flowers left by the family or friends and drawings from the children to say how much they miss their soldier.
Memorial Day was a response to the unprecedented carnage of the Civil War, in which some 620,000 soldiers on both sides died. The loss of life and its effect on communities throughout the country led to spontaneous commemorations of the dead.
In 1971, the Monday Holiday Law shifted Memorial Day from May 30 to the last Monday of the month.
This is what Memorial Day is all about. Taking the time to remember the sacrifices of those who gave of their lives in service to our country so that we might enjoy the freedoms of our democracy.
On May 30, 1868, President Ulysses S. Grant presided over the first Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery—which, until 1864, was Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s plantation.
Families all from all over the country came to pay respects to their loved ones this Memorial Day at the Georgia National Cemetery.