Memorial Day 2021

Memorial Day 2021

Manila American Cemetery – Photo Courtesy – American Battle Monuments Commission

Please take a moment to pause, and lest we forget, Memorial Day is all about the members of the armed forces who gave the ultimate sacrifice for all of us to be free. It is not about enjoying the long weekend going to the beach or having a BBQ in your backyard.

It is about those Americans in military uniforms who served and never came back.

  • 655,000 Americans killed in the Civil War. (est. Union & Confederate)
  • 116,516 Americans killed in WWI.
WWII Memorial in Washington, DC
  • 405,399 Americans killed in WWII.

Source: Wikipedia – U.S. Military Casualties of War

Korean War Memorial in Washington, DC
  • 92,134 Americans killed in the Korean War.
Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, DC
  • 153,303 Americans killed in the Vietnam War.
  • 9,971 Americans killed in the Afghanistan War.
  • 31,965 Americans killed in the Iraq war.

Source: Lonestar – I’m Already There (Soldiers Tribute) YouTube

  • And all the Americans killed in other wars.

Here is one way you can participate in this year’s celebration of Memorial Day. CBS News “On the Road” correspondent Steve Hartman and retired Air Force bugler, Jari Villanueva, are again inviting musicians of all abilities and ages to sound Taps on their front lawns, porches, and driveways at 3 p.m. local time on Monday, May 31, for Taps Across America.

Taps is the somber 24-note bugle call played at American military funerals and ceremonies. Hartman and Villanueva hope that the nationwide event, now in its second year, will offer an opportunity to pause for a moment to pay tribute to fallen service members. Traditionally, when people hear Taps, they respond by standing, facing the music and placing their hands over their hearts.

Last year’s Taps Across America project drew tens of thousands of participants across the world. Anyone who can sound Taps can participate.

Here is the sheet music:

Dust off your trumpet or bugle to sound the call this Memorial Day. Join the thousands who will play Taps tomorrow.

Here’s what CBS want you to know.

CBS plans to show some of the videos on the CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell. Take a video of your performance. You can use any phone with a video camera and hold the phone horizontally. If neighbors or friends come to listen, get a shot of them too! Then send the video from your computer or phone via this link. Make sure to click “show metadata” after uploading your video to share information about your performance with us. If the player is under 18, CBS ask that you instead upload your video to social media with the hashtag #CBSTaps. CBS will be browsing public posts with that hashtag on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok.

Let’s all thank the armed forces’ men and women for their service, especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their families and our country.

If you know someone who served and died for our country, you may share their name and the war they served in the comment below to educate the public of what FREEDOM and MEMORIAL DAY are all about.

Thank you and bless you all!

At my visit to the WWII Memorial years ago.

Fifty years ago, I came to America as a legal immigrant

Honolulu_International_Airport_(6932471711)

Fifty years ago on October 14, 1967, I stepped out of a Philippine Airline flight from Manila into a new country with a third preference visa for professionals. I was a CPA from the Philippines. I arrived at Honolulu International Airport with my vanity case, my handbag with my Philippines passport and a hundred dollars in cash. I also had with me my third preference visa, my US certified medical x-ray and a form that stated I had financial support guaranteeing that I will not be a public charge in the United States. My big suitcase was checked in to go straight to New York.

It was a bright sunny day when I deplaned in Honolulu, feeling in awe of the place as a welcoming Hawaiian lady placed a lei over my head and thankful that I made it across the Pacific after a long flight. I don’t know anybody when I arrived on U.S. soil but with the grace of God and an ardent ambition to go abroad, I was on my first leg on my trip to New York.

I reached NY early Sunday morning at 6 am after traveling for almost 24 hours when I left Manila Saturday night. It did not take me long to land a job in New York. Exactly three days after I arrived in New York, I got an offer from ITT Corporation. They wanted me to start right away and I said I would rather start a week later so I could get acquainted with the city first.

I became a U.S. Citizen in 1973  after being a legal immigrant for at least five years which was the requirement for naturalization. I love my new country and have stayed for 50 years. I’ve only been back to the Philippines four times – in 1993 when my parents had their 50th wedding anniversary, in 2006 when both my parents were hospitalized at the same time, in 2007 I made two trips, when Dad passed away in May and then in November 2007 when I was able to talk Mom into coming to New York but she demanded I picked her up. So I did. It was the last time I was back.

It has been a memorable journey and will keep on going. The United States has been good to me and I am grateful. God bless America!   

Until Next time. Stop and Smell the Roses.

Rosalinda R Morgan

Author & Garden Writer