Memorial Day is about honoring those who have fallen while defending our country. The holiday’s origins date back to May 5th 1868:
On May 5, 1868, Gen. John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, officially proclaimed the holiday, and on May 30 of that year, flowers were first placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
As you read this we have soldiers abroad doing what their country has asked of them in both Iraq and Afghanistan. These wars have been going on for a decade now and while casualties have been kept low compared to other historical conflicts, it is important to remember that not all of our troops will be coming home.
In the Afghanistan War we have lost 1594 American soldiers since 2001. Last year was the deadliest year of the Afghan War for US troops since it began, we lost 499 men and women in 2010.
The Iraq War, which began in 2003, has cost us a total of 4454 lives thus far and countless injuries. Thankfully, the amount of US troop casualties in Iraq peaked in 2007 and has declined each year since.
If you want to read blogs more specific to the military, I suggest Milblogging. Amazing!