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Remember true meaning of holiday

We encourage each of you to take time today and Monday to remember the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Observed on the final Monday of May, Memorial Day is a federal holiday, which means that many of us get to enjoy an extra day away from work to spend time with friends and family.

But the true meaning of Memorial Day is often lost in the rush to travel, enjoy barbecues and other leisure activities and to get back home again in time to return to work on Tuesday.

This year, make sure everyone in your family knows the importance of the observance.

Memorial Day is intended as a day of remembering, a time to pay tribute to the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Thanks to their sacrifice, we are able to be with our families and our children and grandchildren can look forward to the continued freedoms and benefits of living in the United States of America.

Too many people take their freedom for granted, forgetting that it was paid for by those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Most of us don’t have to think long to recall someone who died in the service of our nation. Through the years, few families have been left untouched, and visits to cemeteries this weekend to visit the graves of loved ones or friends who paid the ultimate price is a tradition in homes across America. Many visitors place flags or flowers on the graves.

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2205 in Denton will have its annual ceremony at Roselawn Memorial Park at 1 p.m. today, and organizers extend an open invitation to all who want to attend.

“We do it every year,” said post commander Wayne Trevathan. “We never falter on it. We invite the public to be there. And each year we have had a large group that will attend — it’s quite an activity.”

Roselawn provided flags that will be placed along the route to direct people to the site of the ceremony, Trevathan said, adding the ceremony is expected to last about 45 minutes.

“The work the cemetery does — helping setting up the flags and providing us what we need — they really go out of their way, and we appreciate that,” he said.

We might also suggest that you take a drive past American Legion 71 in Denton today or Monday. The American Legion Riders from the post have sponsored a Field of Honor flag display once again this year, and the display is scheduled to remain in place until Tuesday in a field next to the post, which is located at 2501 Spencer Road.

Each of the flags honors a veteran and each bears a yellow tag with the name of the honoree.

Here are a few other suggestions for Memorial Day activities:

Fly the U.S. Flag (raise the flag to the top of the pole, and then lower it to half-staff; at noon, raise the flag once again to its full staff position).

Fly the “POW/MIA Flag” as well.

Pledge to aid the widows, widowers and orphans of those who have fallen and to aid disabled veterans.

Pause for a few moments of personal silence.

There are many other ways to commemorate the sacrifices of our American heroes, and we’re sure that you’ll find one that works for you and your family.

The important thing is to make sure that we never forget the price of our freedom, how it was secured and by whom.