Gwinnett County marks Memorial Day 2017 with solemn participation.
By Anna Kim
Many families have all gotten ready to set out at the drop of a hat for Memorial weekend getaways by heating up the grill, heading to the beach, or watching an enthralling blockbuster movie. However, Memorial Day has its name for a reason. It is customary to mark Memorial Day by visiting graveyards or war monuments and reflecting on the past.
Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5th, 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, and the 30th of May in the same year, is designated for the purpose of strewing flowers, or decorating the graves of fallen heroes---20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers---who died in defense of their country.
The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873, but the South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their heroes on separate days until World War I. The honoring scope was changed from those who died in the Civil War to all Americans who died in any war.
In 1968, the US Congress declared Memorial Day a federal holiday and moved the date to the last Monday of May so that Americans could enjoy a three-day weekend. However, concerned that people are starting to miss the real reason for the holiday, Bill Clinton, former US President, signed “The National Moment of Remembrance Act” in December, 2000. The Act calls on Americans to observe a minute of silence at 3:00p.m. to honor the heroes who have dedicated their lives to fulfill their duty and defend freedom of the country.
Gwinnett County takes the initiative to honor their sacrifice and courage.
“Memorial Day is both exciting and sobering,” said Charlotte Nash, chairman of Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners. “It is a special time to honor those who serve and protect honorably our great country and community. We humbly memorialize the fallen heroes’ sacrifice. It is a very patriotic moment.”
The patriotic moments will be manifested through local parades and events this Memorial Day, on May 29th. The Stone Mountain Memorial Day event is an exciting classic,with the laser show and fireworks starting at 9:30p.m. The popular Atlanta attraction hosts a free program four nights in a row.
In addition, Gwinnett County will kick off Memorial Day Weekend with a tuneful salute to the troops, and host the Memorial ceremony with Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners and local leading parties. The venue is at the Gwinnett Fallen Heroes Memorial, 75 Langley Drive, Lawrenceville, at 1p.m. May 29th. 13 black granite markers bearing the names of 700 Gwinnett County Fallen Heroes are put up at the venue.
Their sacrifice and the cherished liberty they defended will be paid a supreme tribute.
“We must always remember our fallen heroes by striving to build a nation worthy of their sacrifice,” said Mina Choi, 37, Duluth. “We should not take for granted the freedoms for which they fought and died. We should conjure up the heroes’ timeless sacrifice at least one day of the year.”
Gwinnett County marks the Memorial Day at the Gwinnett Fallen Heroes Memorial in Lawrenceville.
American flags are flowing in the wind on Memorial Day.
Korean Conflict, 1950-1953 / Vietnam War, 1959-1975 <Photo=Gwinnettcounty.com>