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“Memorial Day is a federal holiday dedicated as a day of remembrance to those soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our country. For many Americans across the country, it is a day off of work and a long weekend to enjoy barbecue or a trip to the beach. For some, it is a day with much more meaning.
Since 9/11, roughly 7,000 U.S. soldiers have lost their lives while serving in the Middle East. These fallen heroes did not serve alone. They are survived by spouses and children, who are commonly referred to as Gold Star families. To be a Gold Star family member is to be a part of a venerated community that no one wants to be a part of.
A variety of nonprofit groups throughout this country are committed to serving Gold Star families. Following my own service in the military, I have had the privilege to volunteer with some of these compassionate organizations such as Camp Hometown Heroes and Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS). Through both organizations, I have participated as a camp counselor for the children. There are more than 5,000 Gold Star children throughout our country. And in getting to know them, I have been able to get to know the most special group of kids I could ever imagine.”
JJ Editor's Picks
"On Christmas Eve of 1966, Paddy Roy Bates, a retired British army major, drove a small boat with an outboard motor seven miles off the coast of England into the North Sea. He had sneaked out of his house in the middle of the night, inspired..."
"The book that changed lecturer, activist, and current presidential candidate Marianne Williamson’s life, A Course in Miracles, is not available for free online, but its workbook is. You can find it on the website for the Foundation for..."
"Here are two sets of statements from far-distant opposites in the climate change debate. The first is from Naomi Klein, who in her book This Changes Everything paints a bleak picture of a global socioeconomic system gone wrong: “There is a..."
"Voters who trust their government — and each other — are more supportive of ambitious welfare states than those who do not. Across nations, high levels of social trust correlate with high levels of social spending. The relationship between these..."
"With the presidential campaign under way, expect to hear a lot more about a shiny new toy of progressive economic thinking, “modern monetary theory.” It seems to be the only intellectual contortion that might allow candidates to promise..."
"“We don’t want to fight y’all. We’re not trying to go to jail.” That’s what A$AP Rocky, the 30-year-old New York City rapper, can be heard saying in a video of an encounter with strangers in Sweden that has ballooned into an international crisis."
"Israel’s top officials are considering denying Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib entry to their country due to their outspoken, controversial criticism of Israel’s policy toward Palestinians, not to mention their slurs against American Jews as..."
"For most of our lives, we have been conditioned to share a piece of personal information without a moment’s hesitation: our phone number. We punch in our digits at the grocery store to get a member discount or at the pharmacy to pick up..."