Today is Memorial Day in the United States, a day to reflect upon and honor all those who lost their lives in service to their country. While many simply use the day as time off from work and the official start of the summer vacation period, to many more it is a real day of thoughtful reflection. Here are some of my favorite memorials dedicated to those in military service from around the country.
World War I Memorial
Located in Kansas City, Missouri, this is one of the most impressive memorials I have ever visited. The site also includes a superb museum, again one of the highest quality museums I’ve been fortunate enough to visit. The tremendous size of the memorial is appropriate given the tremendous loss felt not only in the United States, but around the world during that truly horrible conflict.
Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial, Honolulu, Hawaii
The site of the famous sneak attack which brought the United States into World War II, this magnificent memorial is much more than just a nod to those who lost their lives here. Indeed, it also serves as the final resting place for those poor souls who lost their lives on December 7, 1941.
Lanai City War Memorial, Hawaii
Evidence of the fact that war leaves no town untouched, no matter its size, this is a lovely and humble tribute to the sons and fathers of Lanai lost in conflict. There are thousands of such memorials found throughout the country, each built with both sorrow and pride.
Gettysburg National Military Park
Growing up on the East Coast, it seemed that Civil War Monuments littered the seaboard, especially since my dad drug me to see many of them. My favorite though is probably one of the most visited, Gettysburg. Everyone knows Gettysburg for Lincoln’s famous, and short, speech given there, but the battle was arguably the war’s turning point. It was also incredibly tragic, with more than 50,000 casualties
Black Revolutionary War Patriots Memorial
Ok, maybe this is cheating as it hasn’t been built yet, but the plans are amazing. The Memorial will be located on the National Mall, within site of the Lincoln Memorial and will honor the 5,000 enslaved Africans and Free persons that served and fought in the American Revolution. Obviously long overdue, and I can’t wait to pay it a visit once completed.
What’s your favorite tribute to fallen soldiers?