Memorial Day, originally known as Decoration Day, originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the fallen Union soldiers of the Civil War. However, by the turn of the 20th century, Memorial Day celebrated Americans who have sacrificed their lives in all wars.
Some of your favorite country artists talk about what it means to be free because of the brave men and women willing to fight and sacrifice for our freedom.
Brandon Lay (Memorial Day) OC: …without you. :37
“My dad was in the National Guard for six years, and his dad was in the Army and in North Africa during World War II. One of my good buddies, Dan Berry, is a captain at Fort Campbell. I’m incredibly humbled every time I’m around those guys, because it really just puts it in perspective. Memorial Day is a special time to remember and gain perspective that everything we enjoy comes with a price, and these guys have paid the ultimate price and so have their families. So, to anybody that’s served in the military, we salute you, and we couldn’t have the life we have without you.”
Dierks (Memorial Day) OC: …upon them. :37
“On the most basic level, I think, for me on the road, I just think about being gone two, three days at a time, maybe a couple of weeks at a time, you know. That seems like a long time when you have kids and family, but these soldiers, they’re gone for months and years at a time – they’re doing 12 to 15 to 18 months — and they have family back home. That, in itself, is such a huge sacrifice, and that’s just the beginning of it. That’s just scratching the surface of what these guys [and gals] are doing every day – preparing for battle, actually being in battle, being wounded in battle, sometimes dying in battle. So, this country obviously, we would not exist without those courageous men and women, and our future depends upon them.”
Eric Church (grandfathers in WW2) OC: …touching to me. :21
“Both of my grandfathers were World War II veterans. I mean, that’s something that’s very rare. I’m not unique, you know. There’s a lot of people out there like that that their grandfathers served. The way that I was raised was very much red, white and blue and very patriotic, and I think that it’s the fact that what they give up is the real thing that’s very touching to me.”
Jordan Davis (Memorial Day) OC: …gave it all. :29
“You know, both my grandparents were in the service; my cousin was also a Marine, so the military hits close to home. I mean I can’t say enough about ‘em. We live in the best country in the world, and it’s because of those guys and because of the people that came before ‘em. So, I can’t thank ‘em enough. I wish we had Memorial Day every day, but it is great to have one day to thank the men and the women that gave it all.”
Keith Urban (SEALS mantra) OC: …conviction. :30
“They have a mantra, and they say ‘the only easy day was yesterday’ and they had this spirit of brotherhood and that’s a particular thing that’s the way in which, I think, it exists is very specific to the Seals. I mean, military in general have this very strong brotherhood code; it’s a particular kind of thing in the Seals. As was the testament, to Lt. Roark who is the lead guy in the film; when he was interviewed talked about funerals he had been to, and he says ‘there isn’t really any one of us who isn’t just a little bit jealous of the guy who’s died,’ and ok, I heard that, that’s a particular way of being that I cannot relate to. That is an unbelievable depth of commitment and conviction.”
LBT (Memorial Day) OC: …whenever we can. :44
KAREN: “It’s such a huge sacrifice what these men and women do for us, not only the ones that are serving, but the families that are left here at home. Kimberly and I met a young girl…she [was] 21 years old, and she has a third baby, and her husband has served multiple times overseas. She’s raising these children at home and doing a great job and the best that she can, and he’s serving our country. He’s making a monstrous sacrifice, but so is she, and so are those children. And we just can’t take it for granted. I mean, it’s just a huge commitment that they make, and what an honor. We love to be able to sing for them and entertain them and to say thank you whenever we can.”
Sam Hunt (Memorial Day) OC: …those freedoms. :40
“My granddad was in World World II. He was on the USS Texas battleship, and he was over at Normandy and over near Japan and he spent a lot of time right in the thick of World War II. He really took pride in what that meant, and it was something I got to see it first hand, as somebody who got to experience that; somebody who had that galvanized American trait. It’s hard to describe it. It was just somebody who’s been through that, seen that and really appreciates what that means. I try to channel that into my life, because I haven’t fought in any war, but I have a ton of respect for folks who have, folks who’ve sacrificed, families who’ve lost lives and just sacrificed years of their own lives and time and effort to maintain those freedoms.”