Memorial Day 2023, by Joseph Miklovic

On this Memorial Day, we are reminded of the extraordinary sacrifices made by brave men and women throughout our history. We stand in solemn remembrance of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice—their lives—in defense of our cherished freedoms and the promise of a better tomorrow. It is a day of gratitude, reflection, and profound respect.

“We gave up our Todays for your Tomorrows.” This powerful statement encapsulates the selflessness and unwavering commitment of our Fallen Heroes. They willingly set aside their own dreams and aspirations, their families and loved ones, knowing that their sacrifice would pave the way for a brighter future for us all. They faced unimaginable hardships, endured grueling battles, and stood resolute in the face of adversity, with the hope that their sacrifice would protect the values we hold dear.

Our Fallen Heroes knew that the cost of freedom is never cheap, nor is it guaranteed. They understood that the blessings we enjoy today were earned through the blood, sweat, and tears of those who came before us. They knew that the path to a better future was often paved with sacrifice and loss. And so, they courageously answered the call, shouldering the heavy burden so that we could experience the lightness of freedom.

Today, we honor the Soldiers who marched into the unknown, the Sailors who sailed uncharted waters, the Airmen who took to the skies, and the Marines who charged into the crucible of combat. They represented every creed, every race, and every background. They were bound together by a shared love for this great nation and a profound belief in the ideals it upholds.

Today, in the shadow of their sacrifices, let us not forget the families who have also borne the weight of loss. The mothers and fathers who received the heartbreaking news, the spouses who became widows and widowers, the children who grew up without a parent—these are the Heroes behind the Heroes. Their strength and resilience in the face of unimaginable grief remind us that the sacrifices of our Fallen Heroes extend far beyond the battlefield.

But Memorial Day is not only a day of mourning; it is also a day of Remembrance and Gratitude. It is a day to Honor the lives that were cut short, to celebrate the courage and valor that defined their service, and to ensure that their memory lives on. It is our duty to carry the torch of freedom they held so high and to preserve the principles they fought to defend.

So, let us recommit ourselves to the ideals for which they fought: Justice, Liberty, and Equality. Let us foster unity in the face of division, and extend compassion to those who need it most. Let us honor their sacrifice by cherishing the freedoms we enjoy and using them responsibly for the betterment of our Nation and the World.

May we never forget the words etched into the fabric of our history: “We gave up our Todays for your Tomorrows.” Today, and every day, let us strive to be Worthy of the sacrifices made on our behalf.

Many have given their lives; many have given limbs; some have sacrificed any hope of ever living a normal life again.

All gave some, some gave all!

The First Catholic Slovak Ladies Associations St. Louis Senior Branch S-101 & J-011, have played a significant role in supporting the Veterans Committee of St. Mary Magdalen Parish in various activities which include U.S. Flag retirements – for the respectful disposal of worn or damaged American flags, in accordance with the United States Flag Code; Breakfast Salutes on Veterans Day for South City St. Louis vets – providing an opportunity for the community to express gratitude to Veterans and offer a token of appreciation for their sacrifices fostering a sense of unity and recognition among the attendees;   maintenance of the Parish’s Flagpole – ensuring that the flags flying high symbolized pride, respect, and unity; and providing U.S. Flags and Vatican

Flags that wave true helping the parish maintain a strong patriotic and religious presence that fosters a sense of pride and reverence among the our community members.

May God bless the souls of our Fallen Heroes, may God bless our armed forces, and may God bless the United States of America.