We have once again reached Memorial Day, and as I do every year here on The Phinsider, I like to ask all of you to please remember why this holiday exists. We all enjoy the long weekend, and it is usually highlighted by hanging out with friends and family around the grill as summer unofficially begins. It is a great weekend, but it is one that is meant to recognize those who sacrificed so that we can all enjoy moments and days like this.
Over the years, Memorial Day has become a second Veterans Day, with the focus on the service member, but that is not the point of the day. While service members are never going to complain about receiving your thanks, that is not what the day is for. It is, instead, about the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen who cannot be with us. The ones who truly gave everything they had, including their own lives, so that we can continue to enjoy our way of life. It's for the men and women buried in Arlington National Cemetery, veterans cemeteries all around the country - and world - and for the ones who may never come home.
As the saying goes, "All gave some, some gave all."
Today is not about the all.
Today is about the some.
Friends and family members who left and did not come home. The service members who are remembered with crosses, Stars of David, crescents, and headstones. The service members that still lie on a battlefield somewhere in the world, and may never get the chance to be laid to rest with the rest of their family or comrades.
Today is about people like Sergeant Christopher Taylor, Specialist Russell Nahvi, Sergeant Arthur Mora, Specialist Jose Rosario, Captain Kevin Smith, Specialist Lex Nelson, Specialist Joseph Lucas, Sergeant First Class Jonathan Lowery, Sergeant Benjamin Portell, Captain Rowdy Inman, Staff Sergeant Bryant Mackey, Staff Sergeant Chad Caldwell, Specialist Alex Gonzalez, Sergeant Jose Regalado, Specialist Corey Shea, Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt, and Private First Class Robert Friese.
And now, for the first time, I have to add a name to my annual list that I cannot believe I have to add. Today is for Major Christopher Nogle. My brother. I love him and miss him so damn much every day. Today is about him, and so very many others.
OCSO Motors honoring the funeral procession of @USArmy Major Christopher R. Nogle of Oviedo on route to his final resting place at at Florida National Cemetery, Bushnell. pic.twitter.com/USQizw8Vhh— Orange County Sheriff's Office (@OrangeCoSheriff) January 11, 2019
Today is a day to remember that freedom is not free.
Today is a day to remember the service members who died while serving our country.
Have fun today and tonight. Enjoy the unofficial start to summer. Hopefully you are grilling some great meat and enjoying great weather. Be smart if you are drinking, and don't drive.
But, somewhere today, take a moment to remember why we have Memorial Day.