Last Memorial Day I wrote about the importance of remembering those who came before us; those who gave their lives fighting to defend our freedom. It is vital that we remember them, acknowledge them, and continue to thank them and their loved ones for the sacrifices they made on our behalf.
This year, however, as important as it is to look backwards and remember the dead, equally its an imperative to look around and see the suffering of the living. Particularly today, as we head into Memorial Day weekend, let us take a look around and see the brave men and women who served, and continue to serve, in ways most of us never have and never will.
And this year let us open our eyes to a tragic and shocking statistic. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there are, on average, 22 veteran suicides a day! That translates to one suicide every 65 minutes!!! And according to many reports, that number is low as suicides tend to be underreported.
More soldiers this past year died by their own hand than that of the enemy.
This is unacceptable.
The fact that most of us don't know these statistics is unacceptable.
The truth that we are doing nothing about this reality is unacceptable.
This year, as you prepare for Memorial Day by buying your burgers, beer and barbecue sauce, maybe throw one more purchase into the mix. Follow the link below and donate to an organization which embodies the essence of Memorial Day - to remember not only dead soldiers but living soldiers and veterans as well.
This year let us remember our fallen veterans.
This year let us equally remember the living soldiers and veterans too.
Let's help them find their way through the darkness.
Let's pray for the day when these horrible statistics fade away.
God bless our men and women in uniform.
God bless all of our brave veterans.
God bless us all and may God continue to bless the U.S.A.
You can learn more here.
For more about Rabbi B or to buy his new book: "Spark Seekers: Mourning with Meaning; Living with Light," visit him at www.RabbiB.com