2009.06.03 Amy Moore: Memorial Day Parade

Written by David Green.

Mr. Green’s editorial with explanation of the changes made to this year’s Memorial Day events by the Morenci American Legion made me wonder if perhaps they were thinking the “March of Remembrance” should be only for military personnel and their families.

Memorial Day should not be about a parade, but it also should not be ONLY about honoring military personnel who have died in service to their country. It SHOULD be about honoring ALL military personnel, including those who have died, those who served honorably but survived and those who are currently serving, as well as the families of all these military personnel who also sacrificed by being separated from their loved ones either for a short time or forever.

I was there on the side of the street on Monday, May 25, 2009 to watch what I thought was a parade…to honor all of those people…I wasn’t there for the candy or to see business trucks or fire trucks or ATVs, but I surely expected more.  I was embarrassed and appalled at the lack of support for the parade and the lack of entries in the parade.

I proudly marched with the MHS Band in the parade and played for the services at the park and the cemetery years ago.  Thank you to those who did march or ride in the parade this year–and the MHS Band sounded wonderful!

My father served in the Navy during peacetime and I have friends who have been or are in the military.  I have much respect for and want to honor ALL military personnel and their families.  If not for ALL of them our freedom wouldn’t exist and continue.  Why does it need to be ONLY a “somber time to reflect” as Mr. Green described in his editorial?  There is a somber time during the event–the times that “Taps” is played and speeches are given and flags and wreathes are placed. 

I have deeply sad feelings for those who had to die while in service to our country and for their families and friends, but wouldn’t they want us to remember them with the parade in Morenci?  Memorial Day is also not only about remembering the ones who died for our country but about not forgetting WHY they fought and died and why they continue to fight.  If we don’t have a parade I fear many more will forget why as they won’t attend the events at the park or cemeteries either.

Do you think if this way of honoring our fallen soldiers continues in Morenci, that there will be any kids who grow up and continue to have any kind of parade or ceremony?  Include people by telling them beforehand the purpose of the event and what should be included. Let’s not have a list of what or who should not be included…let’s have a list of suggestions for parade entries…bikes and floats decorated with flags and in red white and blue or military vehicles carrying veterans or current military personnel or families of the same…if anyone wants to show their pride in and support of our military, past or present, in some way, why discourage them?

And why change what it is called from a “parade” to a “Remembrance March”?  There have been many parades throughout history to honor our fallen soldiers.

Change is inevitable and should be welcomed when it is handled in a positive way…let’s make Morenci THE small town to come to for a positive and wonderful Memorial Day Celebration.

I’ll be on the side of the street at the next Memorial Day PARADE to show my respect unless I am allowed to show it by riding my decorated bike or marching with my flag or riding on a float…I challenge every area resident to do the same…show your pride in Morenci, Michigan, and the United States.

– Amy Moore

Morenci Road, Morenci

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