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Memorial Day, May 26, 2014

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Memorial Day is the day that America has set aside to honor those men and women who have lost their lives serving in the armed forces of our country. The celebration, originally known as Decoration Day, was established to honor Union soldiers of the Civil War. However, after World War I, the honor was extended to all Americans who died in wars. We distinguish this day from Veterans Day where we honor all veterans who are living”

The May 23, 2014 results of a poll by Rasmussen, a nationally, widely respected polling company, showed “64% of Americans Consider Memorial Day The Start of Summer.”

The poll does not discuss what Americans are actually doing on Memorial Day. Indeed, many Americans will be just enjoying their "summer". Indeed, David Wharton, a classics professor at University of North Carolina-Greensboro, said, “The war was a long time ago. I don't think it's meaningful for most people."

Regardless, we should not forget the true meaning of Memorial Day. As such, a number of central Texans will be attending Memorial Day ceremonies being planned here in Austin and the surrounding communities:

Austin

Music begins at 9:40 a.m. And, beginning 10 a.m, the Daughters of the American Revolution will host a ceremony at the Texas State Cemetery located at 909 Navasota St. A color guard and musket salute from the Sons of the American Revolution in period dress will accompany the ceremony. Brig. Gen. Richard T. Drury is the guest speaker.

A Capella Texas will sing patriotic songs at a free concert at noon in the Texas Capitol Building rotunda located at 1100 Congress Avenue.

Burnet

The Texas Capital Chapter 1919 of the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH) is sponsoring the Austin Memorial March at the Reveille Peak Ranch from 6:30 a.m. Until 9:00 pm. This is a 20.14 mile Memorial March that honors and pays tribute to military, law enforcement, firefighters and rescue personnel within our communities who have paid the ultimate price for our security and our freedom.

Georgetown

The annual Memorial Day ceremony will be held at the Georgetown-Williamson County Veterans Memorial Plaza in Sun City Texas beginning at 9:30 a.m.

U.S. Senator John Cornyn will be in attendance and will introduce guest speaker, Dr. Charles Schwertner, Texas state senator for District 5. Music will be provided by the 36th Infantry Division Band of the Texas Army National Guard and a flyover will be performed by Falcon Flight, a Texas-based formation flying team.

Killeen

VFW Post 9192 and the Central Texas Fallen Heroes Foundation will host a Memorial Day ceremony Monday at 10 a.m. at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, 11463 State Highway 195.

LTG. Mark Milley, III Corps and Fort Hood Commander, will be the featured speaker. This year’s ceremony will include the laying of wreaths, a 21-gun salute, and the unveiling of the 2013 Memorial Slate honoring soldiers lost in Afghanistan.

Lakeway

The Standing Military Committee, members of the Lohmann's Ford Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Lakeway Police Department and the City of Lakeway Parks and Recreation Department will partner with Lake Travis High School to host a performance by the Air Force Band of the West in tribute to the fallen on Memorial Day at noon in the Performing Arts Center at Lake Travis High School.

Round Rock

Defiant CrossFit is holding its fifth “Memorial Day Murph”, an annual fundraiser for Wounded Warriors beginning at 9 a.m. This is an “organization that provides programs and services to severely injured service members during the time between active duty and transition to civilian life.” The event will be held at 16801 Radholme Court in Round Rock

The “Memorial Day Murph” in memory of Navy Lieutenant Michael P. Murphy, of Patchogue, N.Y., who was killed in Afghanistan June 28th, 2005.

San Marcos

The San Marcos VFW is sponsoring a Memorial Day Service at the San Marcos Cemetery beginning at 11 a.m. Flags will be placed on all Veteran Graves by the Boy Scouts of America prior to the service.

In conjunction with Memorial Day and widely unknown to most Americans is the “National Moment of Remembrance”. Public Law 106-579, signed by President Bill Clinton on May, 2000, established the White House Commission on Remembrance which asked all Americans:

Wherever you are at 3:00 p.m. on Memorial Day ... 
pause for a moment of reflection ... 
Live honoring America's fallen every day.

And so, in conjunction with our other ceremonies that day, we veterans will honor our fallen heroes in doing just that. And we hope you will join us.

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