Veteran describes the 'true' meaning of Memorial Day

Veteran describes the 'true' meaning of Memorial Day

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Memorial Day is not all about grilling out or the start of summer, it is paying respect to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. 

Michael Bob Starr, a retired Colonel with the U.S. Air Force delivered a speech at the Historic City of Lubbock Cemetery, recognizing the true meaning of this holiday.

He said it is about remembering and preserving the memories of lives lost while defending America. Starr also adds it is important to remember the families of those lost ones. 

"Most of us have the luxury of spending one day out of the year remembering the fallen, but there are families that have to spend every single day," Starr said.

Starr said what keeps soldiers going is the support from back home. 

"I've deployed for 1,100 days since 9-11 and those are the things I thought about while I was deployed," Starr said. "I thought about memorial day celebrations. I thought about small town parades, rodeos and people standing at football games for the national anthem and I'm not talking about the NFL, I'm talking about high school football games throughout West Texas and those are the things that sustain us." 

Patricia Cowan is with the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, an organization dedicated to historic preservation, education, and patriotism. She said it is important the city provides opportunities for everyone to honor these lives. 

"Henderson Chapter started this 16 years ago and nothing was being held out here at the time and they decided it needed to be done," Cowan said.

Every year since, veterans, family members of lost ones, and everyday citizens have been showing their support and appreciation. 

"Lubbock has supported the military, starting in WW2 when they put Reese out there," Cowan said.

Starr said it is a day to set all differences aside and pay respects. 

"I think it's easy to look at current times and conclude that we are more divided than we've ever been," Starr said. "I think that's been true throughout a lot of history and a lot of times it gets magnified just because it's recent and it's something that we know but I think despite our differences, one of the things that unites us, is the honor we should show to those who gave their lives for our freedom." 

In addition to the ceremony, Veterans of Wars, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts of America troops placed flags on gravesites that have veterans administration memorial headstone or footstone. 

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