- Cullman, Alabama

May 27, 2013

A time to remember

The Cullman Times

CULLMAN — Those who served, and those who continue to serve in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard took an oath to uphold and protect the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic, and we can never forget the importance of their commitment to our Nation. — Robin Hayes

Americans are great defenders of freedom, starting on our own shores and places afar where injustice and tyranny run rampant.

From the great wars of the last two centuries to the sudden rise of new powers in lands far from our borders, the American faith and commitment to freedom has stood as a beacon for many people seeking courage and a new way of life. Even as old regimes are toppled across the planet — in some cases led by factions we don’t fully understand — some degree of yearning for freedom is in play.

Throughout the world’s recent history, the United States has been a powerful hand in bringing down despots and opening the gate to a better life for others.

American military might was a major force in stamping out Hitler’s Nazi hatred. Imperialists have fallen before the American armed forces.

Dating back many years, to the early dawning of this nation, that desire for freedom and the willingness to fight and die for it, has defined the American spirit.

As Memorial Day prepares to dawn across the land, many Americans will notice an abundance of the nation’s flags decorating communities from coast to coast. Many ceremonies will take place honoring the men and women who gave their lives for the cause of freedom and the protection of this country.

Many surviving veterans and the families of deceased veterans are concerned that too few of us take time to pause and think about those who gave their lives for freedom. Ceremonies attract varying turnouts of citizens, but these services for the fallen heroes deserve much larger crowds.

Take a little time Monday to remember why we remain able to enjoy a unique way of life. The solemn markers in cemeteries across the country tell the story of a nation determined to preserve freedoms of speech, voting, worship and many other aspects of life we often take for granted. For any family that has lost a loved one in military service, and to those who serve and have served, we remember.