May 272012

An Obedience To Duty As They Understood It; These Men Suffered All; Sacrificed All and Died!

Arlington National Cemetery is the final resting place for those who fought for the Confederacy and Union during the War Between the States. It is also the burial place for men and women who fought our nation’s wars since the War Between the States.

Did you know that some 245,000 Servicemen and Women, including their families, are buried at Arlington?

The world famous Arlington National Cemetery in located in the shadow of the Custis-Lee Mansion (Arlington House) that was home to General Robert E. Lee and family until 1861 at the beginning of the War Between the States. This cemetery is on the Virginia side of the Potomac River and Washington, D.C. is across the river.

In 1864, Union soldiers were first buried here and by the end of the war the number rose to 16,000.

The Union burial site at Arlington National Cemetery is located at (section 13). Those buried at Arlington include: President John F. Kennedy, General Jonathan M. Wainwright, Actor-War Hero Audie Murphy and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

About the turn of the century 1900 the USA also honored the men who fought for the Confederacy. The burial site for Dixie’s soldiers is located at (section 16).

A beautiful Confederate monument at Arlington cemetery towers 32.5 feet and has an inscription that reads, “An Obedience To Duty As They Understood It; These Men Suffered All; Sacrificed All and Died!”

Some people claim the Confederate monument at Arlington may have been the first to honor Black Confederates. Carved on this monument is the depiction of a Black Confederate who is marching with the white soldiers.

In 1898, President William McKinley, a former Union soldier, spoke in Atlanta, Georgia and said, “In the spirit of Fraternity it was time for the North to share in the care of the graves of former Confederate soldiers.”

In consequence to his speech, by act of the United States Congress, a portion of Arlington National Cemetery was set aside for the burial of Confederate soldiers. At this time 267 Confederate remains from and near Washington, D.C. were removed and re-interred at this new site at Arlington.

In 1906, The United Daughters of the Confederacy asked for permission from William Howard Taft to erect a Confederate monument. Taft was at the time serving as the United States Secretary of War and was in charge of National Cemeteries.

With permission the Arlington Confederate Memorial Association was formed and the ladies of the UDC were given authority to oversee work on the monument.

An agreement and contract was made with Sir Moses J. Ezekiel who was a Jewish Confederate Veteran by the record of his service at the Battle of New Market while he was a cadet at Virginia Military Institute. Work started at his workshop in Italy in 1910, and upon his death in 1917, the Great Sculptor, was brought back home and buried near the base of the Arlington Confederate Monument.

The year was 1914, and the Arlington monument was unveiled to a crowd of thousands that included former Union and Confederate soldiers.

This memorial event was presided over by President Woodrow Wilson and the people applauded the stirring speeches given by: General Bennett H. Young—-Commander In Chief of the United Confederate Veterans, General Washington Gardner—-Commander In Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, Colonel Robert E. Lee—-grandson of General Robert E. Lee and Mrs. Daisy McLaurin Stevens President General of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

The Arlington Confederate Monument unveiling was concluded by a 21 gun salute and the monument was officially given to the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the UDC gave it back to the United States War Department for keeping and was accepted by President Woodrow Wilson who said:

“I am not so happy as PROUD to participate in this capacity on such an occasion—-proud that I represent such a people.”

Since President Wilson wreaths have been sent to both sections of Arlington.

Let us never forget!

- source

May 272012

A dedicated military family finally received the reunion they had been waiting for. A military couple serving overseas at the same time returned home early to Wisconsin from Afghanistan. The pair hadn’t seen their two children since last October. The kids thought they were on a tour of the airport with the Boy Scouts, but got the surprise of a lifetime when they were reunited with their parents

May 272012

I have never been able to think of the day as one of mourning; I have never quite been able to feel that half-masted flags were appropriate on Decoration Day. I have rather felt that the flag should be at the peak, because those whose dying we commemorate rejoiced in seeing it where their valor placed it. We honor them in a joyous, thankful, triumphant commemoration of what they did. - Benjamin Harrison

Southern women scattered spring flowers on the graves of both the Northern and Southern soldiers who died during the Civil War.

This was the origin of Memorial Day, which in 1868 was set on MAY 30.

In 1968, it was moved to the last Monday in May.

From the Spanish-American War, to World Wars I and II, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, War against Islamic Terror, up through the present, all who gave their lives to preserve America’s freedom are honored on Memorial Day.

I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country. – Nathan Hale

Beginning in 1921, the tradition has been for Presidents to lay a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which is guarded 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

The number 21 being the highest salute, the sentry takes 21 steps, faces the tomb for 21 seconds, turns and pauses 21 seconds, then retraces his steps.

Inscribed on the Tomb is the phrase:


The dead soldier’s silence sings our national anthem. – Aaron Kilbourn

In his 1923 Memorial Address, President Calvin Coolidge stated:

“There can be no peace with the forces of evil. Peace comes only through the establishment of the supremacy of the forces of good. That way lies through sacrifice…’Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.'”


The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.- Thomas Campbell

~ A JUST Must See Video May 25, 2012 by usaa:

Courage to Persevere is the theme of USAA’s 2012 Memorial Day program. Highlights include J.R. Martinez, motivational speaker and champion of Dancing with the Stars, Season 13; singer Angie Johnson, a contestant on The Voice and former Tops in Blue performer; and country music artist Russ Murphy.

Soldier, rest! Thy warfare o’er.- Sir Walter Scott