Thank God that Such Men and Women Lived!

Remembering on Memorial Day

Remembering on Memorial Day

If you’ve ever walked a graveyard, you’ve probably noticed headstones and markers darkened by mold and mildew where the names inscribed of those buried are illegible. That’s exactly what Andrew Lumish, photographer and history buff, noticed several years ago as he walked the grounds of a cemetery.

Lumish, although not a veteran himself, was moved to honor America’s heroes by restoring the gravestones of military veterans in Florida. As the owner of a cleaning company, he understood what it would take to clean and restore the places of rest of those who served.

Most Sundays Lumish can be found at the Woodlawn Cemetery, not far from Tampa’s skyscrapers, where history on the headstones date back to 1888. The remains of some who served from the Civil War to Vietnam rest there.

To date, Lumish has transformed about 600 headstones. Not only does he restore their grave markers to honor them for all they’ve given, but he digs deep into the past to uncover stories that might otherwise go untold. Lumish says that he hopes that his actions will help people appreciate the men and women who currently serve in the armed forces.

“Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it. It flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it.” –Author Unknown

Memorial Day is the day Americans set aside to honor those brave men and women who met tragic ends while defending our freedom. It is our privilege and duty to honor their sacrifices, to pray for their families and to bow our heads in recognition of their service.

We should not say “Happy Memorial Day.” It is not a “happy” day but a somber one. In the words of General George S. Patton, “It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.”

As we reflect on the fallen and their families ultimate sacrifice on Memorial Day, may we bow our heads in prayer and thanksgiving for them and give God thanks for their lives they were willing to give.