The United States and the freedom for which it stands, the freedom for which they died, must endure and prosper. Their lives remind us that freedom is not bought cheaply. It has a cost; it imposes a burden. And just as they whom we commemorate were willing to sacrifice, so too must we - in a less final, less heroic way - be willing to give of ourselves.
I watched American TV shows: Starsky & Hutch, Dallas, Rockford Files, Bonanza. And for many summers growing up, I worked on my aunt and uncle's farm in East Anglia. Down the street was an American cemetery for the Second World War, and every Memorial Day an American bomber would fly over that cemetery and drop rose petals.
Sometimes the enormity of war overwhelms the truth that all great struggles are just the sum of individual stories. Each is more than just the story of one soldier's service and sacrifice. Their service ripples across their families, friends and their communities. Memorial Day reminds us it is the noble sacrifice of many that makes us who we are.