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The Five O'Clock Pause

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Every day at five o'clock on the dot across the country on every military base, life comes to a standstill as the National Anthem is played. Cars stop dead in the road and the drivers step out to salute and pause in respect. Children are taught to stop what they are doing, whether they are playing a game or leaving practice, and pay tribute to the National Anthem and in turn, to the wonderful things that make us Americans.

The daily National Anthem is not extremely well known to many, other than military families and those who work on military bases, such as government workers, civilian workers and government contractors. But for a brief moment, everyone comes together and takes a moment in respect for our National Anthem.

The anthem signifies the end of the work day, but it has come to mean something much more for the thousands that stand at attention daily during the song. The song was written by Francis Scott Key after being moved to inspiration at the sight of the United States' flag waving high above after a night of fighting the British.

It can be easy to forget the importance of the flag and the national anthem, but it is vital that we all remember the lives that have been lost in earning and defending our freedom. Though the song signifies the end of the workday, may it also remind us of the importance of our military, who continue to fight for our freedom and safety, and to the men and women on bases who support them.

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