Pat Shingleton: "Decoration Day..."
Our late "Mum" would refer to Memorial Day as "Decoration Day" where visitations to grave sites included the placement of wreaths to those that died in service to our country. A special salute to veterans and those in service at this time. Memorial Day also incorporates numerous outdoor activities and experts recommend the use of sunscreen, not just at the beach, golf course, pool or tennis court, but everyday. Research indicates that 90 percent of Americans polled know someone who has been diagnosed with some form of skin cancer. On cloudy days, 80 percent of the sun's rays cause sunburn. If you notice a shadow with your back to the sun, sunscreen is needed. Experts recommend applying sunscreen on sensitive places such as your face, ears, lips and the scalp. In reflecting on Memorial Day, Steven Ambrose’s books, “Band of Brothers” and “D-Day” portrayed the experiences of individual soldiers during World War II. Excerpts included references to the difficulties of the elements in America’s victories. “Band of Brothers” became a mini-series on HBO. In addition to Tom Brokaw’s book, “The Greatest Generation,” soldiers of both the European and Pacific Theaters were subjected to extreme weather conditions. The Battle of the Bulge found the soldiers of Easy Company without adequate winter clothing, maneuvering through mud, snow and sub-zero weather. The Steven Spielberg-Tom Hanks production, “Pacific,” also depicted challenging weather conditions where tropical rains slowed the advance of armaments and supplies. These are examples of service and those that served during tough times and tough conditions.