The Student News Site of Elkhart High School

The PENNANT Online

The Student News Site of Elkhart High School

The PENNANT Online

The Student News Site of Elkhart High School

The PENNANT Online

Memorial Day: Not Just Another Monday

Honor those who paid the ultimate price for freedom

Most people don’t relish the thought of “Mondays”–unless they get the day off.

As the school year inches towards the end, the excitement of summer break is almost palpable when passing through the halls. While approaching the end of another year of grueling work and sleepless nights studying, the last Monday of May is within reach, signifying Memorial Day in the U.S. Unlike Veterans’ Day—a day meant to celebrate those living (active or veteran) as well as the deceased committed to military service in the U.S.—Memorial Day is meant to observe and honor those who have sacrificed their lives during service.

It is often easy to forget just how fortunate one is when granted privilege–and the privilege of freedom in the U.S. is one made through the determination and sacrifice of those who have served, thus making Memorial Day an important day.

Elkhart High School actually has those who have served in the military—one of these people being Mr. Donald Stolz. Stolz served in the Army, working in the infantry, and stationed at Fort Drum, New York, from 1993 to 1997; he was deployed once to Haiti in 1996 for a span of 3-4 months. 

Stolz provided his input on the seemingly decreasing observance of Memorial Day, stating this: “A lot of people think Memorial Day is just a day that they get off; they don’t see the significance of it.” Heartbroken by that thought, he adds, “It kind of hurts me a little bit. Being a permanent substitute teacher this year, I’ve been in a lot of classrooms, and I’ve only been in one classroom where all of the students have stood up and said the Pledge; and in that class, there were only five kids.”

Stolz goes on to say, “The [lack of] acknowledgement for something as simple as [the Pledge] is disheartening, because [many] have fought for [students] to be able to do that, and they don’t care or take advantage of it.”

On Memorial Day, it is imperative to take the time to remember those who have died. As Stolz puts it, “Recognizing someone who has sacrificed his or her life in service–who has fought for your rights…fought for your ability to have all the freedoms you have in this country–is a small sacrifice comparatively speaking.”

Nothing in this world is truly free–including freedom. Thus, when waking up on Monday, May 27, in the comfort of a day off, don’t forget to honor those who paid the ultimate price–those who gave up a lifetime of Mondays so that their fellow Americans can continue to freely enjoy them.

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Salah Ali
Salah Ali, Staff Writer
Hi! My name is Salah. This is my second year writing for The PENNANT. I first joined as a sophomore but was not able to work it back into my schedule until now, my senior year. When I originally joined, I had know what to expect from this, but I discovered that writing proves to be something I truly enjoy! Hopefully, readers will enjoy what I have to say, as well!

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