When we were in high school, the band always had to play a Memorial Day service at our home town cemetary. I can't say as though I thoroughly enjoyed waking up early to play the Iowa Corn Song, but I always felt sentimental looking out into the crowd of veterans who would come pay their repsects.
I played the trumpet and became the regualr TAPS player at funerals and let me tell you, I can't hear that song and not get tears in my eyes... one fundamental song that speaks volumes to so many people. I remember hiding behind a tombstone at a man's funeral playing TAPS and crying at the same time - not an easy feat, but knowing the family was there to hear me and say their last good-byes made a world of difference.
Every year the legion would have a ceremonial flag burning and I would have to play at their event as well. I never fully understood how much the American flag meant until I watched the men carefully place those old, tattered, and faded flags into the big, metal barrel and salute each one. It brings about a whole new perspective on our freedom and the men and women who are still fighting for us thousands of miles away.
Memorial Day is also a day that my parents go around to cemetaries and place flowers on the graves of loved ones. On the occasions that I would go with them, it was a nice time to reflect on the family and friends that were in our lives and what they meant to us.
Yesterday at church, the pastor was talking about the legacy that people leave behind - what sort of legacy do you want people to remember about you?
Celebrating this day means remembrance, bbq's, fun, friends, and family - I hope you each take time out to remember the people in your life and how much they mean to you....tell somebody that you love them... and to my friends and family, I love you.