Remembering Independence Day, July 4, 1776

On Independence Day, celebrated on July 4th, Americans celebrate our country’s freedom with fireworks, family, and friends. Amidst the fun and hoopla, let’s pause to remember the supreme price of freedom.

On Independence Day, celebrated on July 4th, Americans celebrate our country’s freedom with fireworks, family, and friends. Amidst the fun and hoopla, let’s pause to remember the supreme price of freedom.

The United States flag displayed at Grand Central Station, New York City, NY
The United States flag displayed at Grand Central Station, New York City, NY

Let’s hoist up our American flags, prominently wear our red, white, and blue, and proudly show our dedication to those to whom we owe this weekend: our nation’s veterans and U.S. military.

Our country is great because of them. In their honor, I want to invite everyone to take a moment with me today and pause in honor of those who have fought and those who continue to fight for our freedom.
Liberty Bell -replica
replica of the Liberty Bell at Disney World, Florida , photo by Dr. Aletha

“As the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization, the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) thanks the brave men and women who fought – and continue to fight – at home and abroad, along with their families who sacrificed along with them, to allow us the privilege to live in the Land of the Free because of the brave.”

(message courtesy of ALA leadership)

May God bless America and our friends around the world.
The Statue of Liberty
“Liberty Enlightening the World” on Liberty Island, New York City, gift to the United States from France

I am proud to be a member of the

American Legion Auxiliary

and the Daughters of the American Revolution. 

Have a happy, healthy, and safe Independence Holiday.   

Dr Aletha

a woman in a red, white, and blue shirt
Me, a few years ago, showing my patriotic spirit by posing in red, white, and blue

Memorial Day

In the battlefields of Belgium during World War I, poppies grew wild amid the ravages of war. The overturned soils of battle covered the poppy seeds , allowing them to grow and forever serve as a reminder of the bloodshed of war.

Being the daughter and wife of United States military veterans, I appreciate all the other families of our country’s veterans. With sadness and appreciation, I remember all the men and women who left home to serve our nation and never returned home.

We celebrate the unofficial start of summer at the end of May as a “holiday” weekend. However, Memorial Day is the day Americans set aside to honor those brave men and women who lost their lives while defending our freedom. It is our duty to honor their sacrifices, to pray for their families, and to bow our heads in recognition of their service.

The American Legion Auxiliary adopted the poppy as a symbol of this remembrance.
We will never forget.
used by permission
Why the poppy?

In the battlefields of Belgium during World War I, poppies grew wild amid the ravages of war. The overturned soils of battle covered the poppy seeds , allowing them to grow and forever serve as a reminder of the bloodshed of war.

Out of this conflict came a poem, from which also came the association with poppies .

In Flanders Fields

 This now famous poem was written by a Canadian physician, Lt. Col. John McCrae.

Dr.McCrae was an English and math teacher, as well as a poet, before he attended medical school. He moved to England and was practicing there when World War I broke out, and he was called to serve as a brigade-surgeon.

I suspect that as a physician, he was deeply  pained by  treating the wounded, and the lossong the ones he could not save.

“In April 1915, McCrae was stationed in the trenches near Ypres, Belgium, in an area known as Flanders, during the bloody Second Battle of Ypres.

In the midst of the tragic warfare, McCrae’s friend, twenty-two-year-old Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, was killed by artillery fire and buried in a makeshift grave.

The following day, McCrae, after seeing the field of makeshift graves blooming with wild poppies, wrote his famous poem “In Flanders Field,” which would be the second to last poem he would ever write.”

poets.org

simple cross grave markers in a cemetery

In Flanders Fields

John McCrae, 18721918

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row, 
That mark our place, and in the sky, 
The larks, still bravely singing, fly, 
Scarce heard amid the guns below. 

We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, 
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields. 

Take up our quarrel with the foe! 
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high! 
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

This poem is in the public domain.

exploring the HEART of service

Dr. Aletha

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