Remember the price they paid

Today is casually considered the start of the summer vacation season.

The kids are out of or about to get out of school. The weather has taken a turn for the better. The grills are out in full force.

But today is a time to take a moment to consider those freedoms we enjoy as Americans to live in a place where we can consider vacations and picnics and good weather as harbingers of good days.

That freedom came at a steep price, and today, Memorial Day, is a time to consider that price, paid in the lives of generations of people who have died to preserve the American ideal.

We live in a country where turbulent politics are the way of change, not the barrel of tanks.

Hundreds of thousands of young men and women answered – and still answer – the call to duty to defend the nation, to represent its best interests and ideals and to be of service to those in need anywhere on the face of the earth in the name of the United States. It’s not just about war. It’s about assistance. It’s about aiding nations and people who need someone to stand up for them.

It’s about answering that call knowing full well that the sacrifice to be paid could be to be in harm’s way, to fall in the name of the nation while fighting the enemies of freedom around the globe.

We honor those who paid that ultimate price today, with a sense of honor and dignity and purpose, to live lives worthy of that sacrifice paid all too often.

Take a moment today. Attend a community Memorial Day event or just say a prayer of gratitude of spend a moment thinking of what it means to have others willing to lay down their lives for all of us.