Originally known as Decoration Day, this was the day almost 150 years ago that we were to go to the cemeteries to decorate the graves of those who died fighting the Civil War. (And yes, it wasn't yet referred to as "The Civil War." If it had an official name, it was The War of the Rebellion, but that wasn't universally accepted, either. Fill in your own alternate name for the Civil War here.) Once World War I (which didn't go by that name at the time, either) supplied a significant number of war dead of its own, the day was expanded to include all those who've died in service to their country.
Although some still do, most of us no longer include a visit to a military cemetery as part of our Memorial Day festivities. If you've got anyone who's died in service, I don't need to remind you to honor them today. But for those who might not, take a moment between burgers off the grill to think about the kind of sacrifice that is for a person, a family, and their nation to make. As unfortunate as it may be, we'll continue to have plenty of opportunities.