Record editorial: Remember the meaning of Memorial Day |

Record editorial: Remember the meaning of Memorial Day

Monday will be a much-needed return to normal for many families in Summit County. After the pandemic forced us to cancel plans for Memorial Day last year, we’ll enjoy the long weekend with a renewed appreciation for the opportunity to gather with loved ones and begin the summer season with a day of relaxation.

Yet we should keep in mind that the holiday is not about having an extra day off work or getting a head start on the perfect summer tan.

Memorial Day is about something much more meaningful: honoring the hundreds of thousands of people who have given their lives for our country.

Most of us cannot comprehend the sacrifice made by U.S. military members who died in combat. Some volunteered, knowing full well there might come a day when they would not return home. Others were drafted into service, dutifully answering the call of their nation. Those of us who know no such sacrifice are forever grateful that there have always been courageous Americans willing to lay down their lives for a cause larger than themselves.

It is every American’s right to oppose our country’s wars, and to challenge the leaders who have sent American men and women into combat. But what cannot be questioned is the selflessness of the people who have bravely fought and died over the course of the nation’s history. They are heroes, in every sense of the word.

Summit County residents on Monday must reflect on them and the legacy they left behind.

Better yet: Take time to attend one of the events scheduled in Summit County to mark the holiday. The Park City post of the American Legion, for one, will gather at 1 p.m. for a walk down Main Street. On the East Side, a group of veterans will travel to several locations throughout the morning, culminating with the dedication of a veterans memorial at the Coalville Cemetery at noon.

Our fallen soldiers died for our country, offering their lives in the belief that their sacrifices would matter to future generations of Americans. They do. The least we can do on Monday in return is remember them, honor what they fought for and consider how we can uphold the ideals for which they fought.

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