As we celebrate Memorial Day this weekend, there are many things to remember and celebrate — either it be baseball or the history of this great nation. Baseball does play an important part in shaping America. When 9/11 happened, it was baseball that shaped theUnited States and brought it back on its feet. It’s baseball that brings smiles to so manysoldiers, sailors, marines, etc., serving this great country. It’s baseball that will be played today, as this holiday is observed, as many of the teams will be wearing theAmerican flag on their hat or sleeve.
This holiday weekend is all too familiar to this baseball scribe. Serving as part of a security force in the Navy Reserves, I was proud to wear the uniform. I was happy when people would come up to myself and my buddies in my unit and say “thank you for your service.” I was happy when we would just sit around, to make the time go by, and talk baseball — joke around about the best team of the century, either it be the Yankees, Red Sox, or now maybe even the Mets. It was when on AT that the bat, ball and glove came out and we hit fungos and played catch.
Coming from a military family, it means just that much more. My late Grandfather served in the U.S. Army, my Father served for 23 years (four Navy, the rest Army) and myUncle served in the Navy. So, as we flip burgers and hot dogs and listen to the game on the radio, let’s really remember what today is all about. Let’s remember the invasion ofOmaha Beach or the service people in Iraq and Afghanistan. We can’t turn our backs on them, but pray for them. If we do see someone in uniform, say “thank you” and see the smile you will bring to their face.
Let’s put all political feelings aside and remember this day, not for just baseball, but for themilitary.