Since the Civil War Americans have taken time to remember those that have died in the service of their country. Every Memorial Day names of those lost are read in ceremonies and parades are held. The lost are honored by putting flowers on the graves of the brave men and women who gave their lives for freedom. For some, time is also taken to remember them with water ceremonies.
Water Ceremony Honoring Those Lost At Sea
In Worcester MA, friends and relatives gathered on Memorial Day to honor sailors and those who were lost at sea. Phil Madaio, the master of ceremony for the event, was only 19 when he was an Army Sergeant in the Vietnam War. Every year he takes time to remember his friends that were lost in Vietnam with a water ceremony.
He remembers his squad leader Charles Johnson, who was cut in half while standing next to him; Bobby Stryker, posthumous Medal of Honor winner, who threw himself on a landmine to save six of his team members; highly decorated Pascal Poolaw, who was a Kiowa Indian serving his country; and his commander Alexander Haig, who later became a United States Secretary of State.
Freedom is Not Free
Remembering the men who served with him but never returned is a reminder that ‘Freedom is Not Free.’ Since America started over 242 years ago 1.2 million people have died defending their country. It is because of their sacrifice Americans appreciate the liberties and freedom enjoyed every day of the year.
51 years later Mr. Madaio is committed to never forgetting those he knew, and those who made the ultimate sacrifice with their lives. Without their sacrifice, Americans would not be enjoying living in the country they know and appreciating their liberties.
This year things did not run smoothly. The bridge where the ceremony is normally held was closed and the water was low. Many wreaths landed in a marshy area after being thrown into the wind. Small problems compared to the sacrifices of those remembered. Regardless, the ceremony was held and time was taken to remember.
Time to Reflect
Throwing wreaths into a river or taking the time to reflect in a pool such as the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. is an honorable and healthy way to remember those who have gone before us. Remembering where we have been enables us to see who we are and gives us a clearer path to who we want to become. If you have any questions regarding a water ceremony give our team at Scattering on Water a call. We are here to help.