Sen. Mike Bernskoetter’s Legislative Column for May 26, 2021

Honoring Our Fallen Heroes

It seems the warm weather is finally here and so is the unofficial start of summer. For many, schools are letting out, and vacations may be just around the corner. I imagine after the past year we’ve all had, many will be taking advantage of the three-day weekend to get out and start enjoying the world again. And while there is plenty to be celebrating, let’s not forget the reason for the extended weekend – Memorial Day. This is a day when we take the time to remember the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in the name of preserving our freedom.

Memorial Day is believed to trace its roots back to Decoration Day, when it became common practice to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers from the Civil War. Gradually, the custom spread across the country and over time, it grew to honor American soldiers who died in other conflicts such as World War I and World War II. The observance continued as both “Decoration Day” and “Memorial Day” until 1967 when the day’s name was officially changed to the latter. In 1971, Memorial Day became a federally recognized holiday, and in 2000, a resolution was passed asking that all Americans voluntarily observe a moment of silence or to listen to ‘Taps ’at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day.

With that in mind, I encourage everyone to set aside a few minutes this Memorial Day to say thank you to our fallen heroes, whether by placing decorations or flags in a cemetery or by simply reflecting on the gift of freedom that we have been given by others’ courage and sacrifices. We should always honor and remember these brave individuals who gave, as Abraham Lincoln said, “the last full measure of devotion.” I hope you will join me this Memorial Day in going so.

As always, it is an honor to serve the 6th Senatorial District. If my office can be service to you, please feel free to contact us at (573) 751-2076. For information about my committee assignments or sponsored legislation, please visit my official Missouri Senate website at