From Wiki -
The first known observance of Memorial Day was in Charleston, South Carolina in 1865; freedmen (freed enslaved Africans) celebrated at the Washington Race Course, today the location of Hampton Park, and each year thereafter. African Americans founded Decoration Day, now referred to as Memorial Day, at the graveyard of 257 Union soldiers and labeled the gravesite "Martyrs of the Race Course" on May 1, 1865.
Daddy was gonna rant right about here. I was going to go off on how we've reduced war and the remembrance of such to a sale on big screen tv's and a backyard hibachi. I was going to spew venom on the whole military industrial complex, who seem reallly good at getting us into armed conflicts, but then forget to properly up-armor the soldiers that they have just deployed. I was going to tear our government a new one for decades of tearing down the US education system and domestic manufacturing base, while simultaneously building up the whole business of Worldwide War Profiteering, seemingly doing so intentionally to ensure a steady supply of new recruits who see enlisting in the military as their only possible career choice.
I was going to do all that, and then I started reading the words of individuals much more well versed than I, and it humbled me. If you want to know War, read the words of the men and women that have been there - those who know war because they have seen it, and felt it - because their blood has spilled on foreign soil where they watched their comrades fall.
The greatest tribute we can give to the spirits of the fallen, this day and every day, is to try with all our might not to add to their number. We must work to wage peace with the same intensity that we now wage war. For their sacrifice, we owe them nothing less.
Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.
~Dwight D. Eisenhower
~Dwight D. Eisenhower
My Chemical Romance - The Ghost Of You by Warner-Music