Memorial Day Reminds Us Of True American Heroes
By Rep. Marlene Anielski (R-Independence)

Taking time to remember the men and women who have died while fighting for our country helps us gain perspective about the things in life that are really important. It also reminds us just how special our country is, and how fortunate we are to live in it.

Earlier this week, the Ohio House and Senate held a joint session in the Statehouse to pay tribute to the Ohioans who were killed in uniform, as well as to honor their families who lost loved ones. The Ohio Military Medal of Distinction is usually presented in November, but this year it was held at a time much closer to Memorial Day.

Having the families come to the Statehouse is meaningful because it shows us that true heroes come from everywhere. While their loved ones were killed in action thousands of miles away, they were once our neighbors. To some, they were mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, future dads, brothers and sisters.

The men and women who serve in the armed forces put their lives on the line for millions of their fellow citizens whom they don’t know and have never met. But their willingness to do this preserves for us the opportunity to pursue the American dream. Memorial Day serves as a reminder of the price tag that freedom carries, but it should not be the only time that we think about our troops.

There are several Memorial Day events throughout the area that give us a chance to unite as Americans to express our gratitude for those who, since our nation’s founding, have made our way of life possible. This Memorial Day, I encourage you to take the opportunity to give of your time, say a prayer or give to a charity in a way that supports our service members and their families. Remember to always say "thanks" to our men and women who serve or did serve to protect our freedom!

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