Posted on May 23, 2015
COL Charles Williams
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I personally get frustrated (hate it) when someone tells me happy memorial day; it started today. So, today, I corrected the first person to say that this year. Am I too uptight?

Memorial Day means something very different too us, than it does to most Americans; the other 99.55%.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2015/05/22/im-a-veteran-and-i-hate-happy-memorial-day-heres-why/
Posted in these groups: Md Memorial Day
Edited >1 y ago
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SFC Mark Merino
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Not in the slightest. I have a hard time thinking of any other way to say it. I just about drove myself crazy with survivor guilt and sadness. Our dearly departed loved ones don't want us to dwell on the loss of their life, but would rather see us get back up on our feet and lead a happy life. No one that truly ever loved us would want us to be depressed and to fail. We owe it to them not only to move forward, but to help others along the way. Don't ever mourn my passing my brother. I'd want you to remember any and every thing I ever did that made a positive impact on your life. I want to remembered for the thing (even if it's the dumbest thing) I ever did that brought you the most laughter.
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COL Charles Williams
COL Charles Williams
>1 y
Define excess?
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SFC William Farrell
SFC William Farrell
>1 y
Well said SFC Merino, as always. My brother and my sister both did the same this morning and I thought its not a happy day but you put me in a different frame of mind with your comments.

And as LT L S said, I drank myself to excess for years after Vietnam. Survivor guilt and sadness over such loss always got to me and still does. But fortunately I am sober now. We as Veterans are much better off not drinking.
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Cpl Dennis F.
Cpl Dennis F.
>1 y
SFC Mark Merino - Nah....fuck it. not worth the effort.
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SFC Greg Bruorton
SFC Greg Bruorton
>1 y
Mark, your comments ring true as well. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
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SFC Stephen Carden
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Most Americans don't even know anyone who served, much less paid the ultimate sacrifice. Maybe they had a grandfather that they never met who died in WWII. To them, Memorial Day is a free day off work that means beach season has started. To those of us who know the real meaning of the day, this may come across as insensitive, crass, or disrespectful. I am glad that my daughter doesn't understand the real meaning of the day. I am glad that most Americans have no idea what it really means, because that tells me that we are doing our jobs. Do you think there is one Iraqi or one Afghan who doesn't have a family member that died in war? Do you think in Serbia, Croatia, Somalia, or any of the other war-torn countries around the world, there is one child who hasn't been touched by war and death? Not in America. Why? Because of those that we honor on Memorial Day. I think those that have given everything for the safety and security of this country would be happy to know that most of those who we defend do not know the horrors of war and the heartbreak of a lost loved one. I sure am. I mean no disrespect to those who we have lost. I guess I just have a different way of looking at it.
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SSG Richard (Rick) Dana
SSG Richard (Rick) Dana
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Getting drafted and being of the Vietnam era, I lost several from my high school days but keep the memories to myself out of respect for my brothers and their families. I fly my flags as well as giving a proper salute for those brothers that fought and sacrificed their lives.
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COL John Power
COL John Power
>1 y
It doesn't bother me. It isn't particularly appropriate as there is nothing to be happy about in the true sense, but what else can one say. At least they thought to say something and that is better than silence or ignoring the day altogether.
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SFC Greg Bruorton
SFC Greg Bruorton
>1 y
Stephen, your comments are on target. Thank you for your point of view.
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SGT John Graham
SGT John Graham
>1 y
As a father I always made sure my children were aware of the meanings of Memorial Day and Veterans Day. My youngest son when about 8 years old, said "I have never seen you cry except for Memorial Day". It hit me that he noticed the profound effect Memorial Day had on me. All my kids have a great respect and honor the sacrifice that the U.S. Military has made. They have taught their own children to show respect for the flag.
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PO1 John Miller
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It does bother me, but instead of getting upset I take the opportunity to educate the person(s) who say it to me.

I usually say "I appreciate it but Memorial Day is for those men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. Please save your thanks to me for Veteran's Day."
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PO1 John Miller
PO1 John Miller
7 y
SGT Joseph W., I think you're mixing up Veteran's Day with Memorial Day. Unless restaurants are now giving free meals on Memorial Day?
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SGT Joseph W.
SGT Joseph W.
7 y
PO1 John Miller , I wasn't confusing the two, my better half is. I do know the difference.
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PO1 John Miller
PO1 John Miller
7 y
SGT Joseph W. thanks for the clarification! That's the one part I hate about the Internet, typed text doesn't always correctly convey meaning.
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Maj John Bell
Maj John Bell
>1 y
I don't think you answered the question that was asked. The question was not about getting thanks for being a veteran on Memorial Day. The question was about someone saying "have a Happy Memorial Day" and what is a "proper" balance of respect and reverence on a day set aside for honoring the war dead.
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