Did you know, it was Black People that started the Memorial Day holiday?
Let me explain.
On May 5, 1868, General John A. Logan, leader of an organization for Northern Civil War veterans, called for a nationwide day of remembrance.
But check out what is documented some three years earlier.
David Blight, a Historian, discovered that on May 1, 1865, freed slaves, with the help of White missionaries, would place flowers on the graves of Civil War soldiers & called it “Decoration Day.”
“Decoration Day” became Memorial Day.
In my imagining, I see those freed slaves laying those flowers on the graves of Black soldiers as a thank you for their freedom in 1865.
Today is the day we honor the brave men & women – especially the unsung Black soldiers who fought in EVERY war our nation has been a part of — who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.
Nearly 40,000 Black Soldiers died fighting for freedom in the Civil War.
I have served my country in the United States Coast Guard Reserve. I give humble thanks to all of the Black Soldiers who died so I could join the military as a way out of poverty.
America is imperfect and unfinished.
As a Black Woman American, I am proud of our Black Soldiers that never seem to get the recognition for ALL they gave to this country. My People, from Buffalo Soldiers to Tuskegee Airmen, fought with valor and died with dignity in the face of vicious Racism for the United States. They fought and died so I had a fighting chance to taste the American Dream.
So I give thanks to our Ancestors who died so we… so I can live, free. I hope you take a moment this “Decoration Day” to do the same.
God bless America.