May 2013 Article

May is the month of Gratitude. We celebrate the strongest and bravest of usall, starting with the Mothers who have loved us, raised us, and encouraged usto be everything we can every single day. We also celebrate the brave, dedicated, and selfless men and women who serve in our military and law enforcement agencies.

Mother’s Day is observed on the second Sunday of May and will be celebrated on May 12th this year. It is a celebration of mothers and motherhood; celebrating the strength and power of mothers and motherhood dates back thousands of years to festivals and societies no longer in existence. The American version of Mother’s Day began in 1908 when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother. She believed no one person does more for us than our mother and for this we should all show extreme gratitude.This West Virginia woman went on to campaign to make Mother’s Day a recognized holiday and finally succeeded in reaching her goal in 1914. Since that time, the tradition has been adopted by other countries around the world and is a national holiday celebrating mothers, grandmothers, and maternal figures.

We often forget to thank the mothers, grandmothers, and mother figures that help usalong, who shape us, guide us, and love us. Having an official Mother’s Day gives us all the chance to do something really special, truly meaningful, to express our deepest gratitude for the love and support we receive all 365 days of the year. One of the most amazing things about mothers is this … A gift of great expense holds far less meaning than a strong hug, a sweet kiss, and heartfelt Thank You.

The next holiday observed in May is Peace Officers Memorial Day. It is held every May 15th to commemorate and honor the courageous men and women killed or disabled in the line of duty serving as a law enforcement officer at the Federal, State, or Local level. The holiday was created by Congress in 1961 and signed into law in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy. There is also a National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.; it features the names of more than19,000 law enforcement officers who have been killed in the line of duty.

The third Saturday in May is Armed Forces Day. On May 18th of this year, we will recognize and honor the men and women who serve in all five branches of our military, as we have since1950. It was in 1962 that President John F. Kennedy established Armed Forces Day as an official holiday.

May 22nd is National Maritime Day. This holiday has roots in Georgia as its celebrated date is the date the American steamship Savannah set sail from Savannah, Georgia on the first ever transoceanic voyage in May of 1819. On this day, we honor military maritime personnel and members of the merchant marines for their dedication to promoting commerce and protecting our freedom.

Memorial Day is observed the last Monday of each May (May 27th this year) in honor and remembrance of the courageous men and women who have given their lives to protect our country. It began after the Civil War to commemorate Union and Confederate soldiers and was later extended to honor all Americans who have died in service to our nation. Volunteers from all over place an American Flag on each grave in all national cemeteries in thanks and honor to those that gave all for our freedom.

Here are two quotes that seemed especially fitting for recognizing the service and dedication of our armed forces members and law enforcement officers:

This nation will remain the land of the free, only so long as it is the home of the brave. Elmer Davis

America’s fighting men and women sacrifice much to ensure that our great nation stays free. We owe a debt of gratitude to the soldiers that have paid the ultimate price for this cause, as well as for those who are blessed enough to return from the battlefield unscathed. Allen Boyd

Whether you know a military person or an officer personally, or just happen to see them while out and about in your daily life, we encourage everyone to take a moment to express your gratitude for all they do to keep us safe from harm and protect our freedoms.

~ Jessica