Barbecues, swimming pools, baseball games, road trips. Memorial Day is often celebrated with one or two of the aforementioned activities. For most, it’s the first three-day weekend of the New Year and a great opportunity to take a short vacation, but the May flowers and sunshine make it easy to forget the actual meaning of the holiday.
There are several different accounts concerning the origin of Memorial Day, but each one was developed with the same goal in mind–to remember those who died while in service to our nation. Members of the military are not just soldiers, but fathers and mothers, sons and daughters.
Military members like Kentucky Army National Guard Sergeant Darrin Potter. Darrin was an MP in the Army National Guard serving in Iraq. He was the first Kentucky Army National Guardsman to die in combat since Vietnam. Darrin’s mother, Lynn Romans, has worked at the Louisville Area Chapter for 21 years. She says that after the passing of her son on September 29, 2003, her extended families at the National Guard and Red Cross helped her make it through the tough times.
Since Darrin's passing, Lynn has become an active member of Gold Star Mothers, a group for mothers of fallen soldiers, and a Fort Knox outreach and support group for the loved ones of fallen soldiers. She is also involved with National Guard youth programs.
Today is a day to honor Darrin and other soldiers who have fallen while defending our country. May their sacrifice never be forgotten.
For information on Red Cross Service to Armed Forces, please visit redcross.org.