by Melissa Brunner
I always enjoy the pre-Memorial Day visit to our area cemeteries with my father-in-law. As we search for the graves of relatives long-since passed, he invariably will relate a memory about them from his childhood or some other tidbit of information - maybe a story about something he and his brothers did!
I am also touched by sight of all the flags decorating the graves, proudly flapping in the breeze, catching your attention as if to exclaim, "Here is a person who selflessly gave of himself or herself so that you can be free!"
Between barbecues and beach trips, movies and sleeping in, I hope you took some time to reflect on those who came before us. Yes, many of us also use Memorial Day to honor those in our families who influenced our lives. At the same time, take note of the graves of those strangers - the ones with the American flag so proudly displayed. It's amazing how these people who we never knew have meant so much to the lives we enjoy today.