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Grijalva: Bring our troops home and help their families

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Memorial Day

Grijalva: Bring our troops home and help their families

  • The sun sets at Tucson's Evergreen Cemetery on Memorial Day 2011.
    bill85704/FlickrThe sun sets at Tucson's Evergreen Cemetery on Memorial Day 2011.

We've seen too many Memorial Days pass while our troops remain overseas, often on their third or fourth tours of duty. This is a day not just to thank all those who have fought for our country, but to remember that our soldiers are people with families who want them home.

We can pay no greater tribute to our soldiers – on Memorial Day or any other day – than to reunite them with their loved ones and make sure they have the support they need from their fellow countrymen. They bear a great deal of hardship without complaint. Saluting them for their dedication and bravery can only be the beginning of an appropriate show of gratitude.

This Memorial Day, let's think of the returning soldiers who need assistance finding a home for their family, or who need mental health counseling, or who need financial assistance in returning to civilian life, and commit ourselves as a national community to making sure they get that help.

There is no excuse for letting our soldiers down when they deserve our assistance, or for thinking a pat on the back is enough. Veterans and current soldiers have both earned the fullest measure of our respect, and we should show that respect by helping them in practice as well as thanking them in words.

I thank all our soldiers who serve and those who have retired from military life, and I ask everyone to give a moment's thought to the generations of Americans killed in war.

Every time we ask them to sacrifice years of their lives in service to their country, we make a promise that we will recognize, reward and honor that sacrifice. This Memorial Day, we should take time to consider how we can all make good on that promise.

U.S. Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva represents Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District.

Brewer orders Arizona flags lowered for Memorial Day

This Memorial Day, I ask that my fellow Arizonans join me in honoring the fallen servicemen and women of our nation's armed forces.

Let us pray for these heroes who lost their lives defending ours, and pay respect to their loved ones left behind. Likewise, let us pray for those who continue to risk their lives so that we may continue to live freely and sleep soundly. 

The service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform can never be fully repaid, but it should be honored. This Monday, we have the opportunity to pay our respects to those who deserve it most – and I hope all Arizonans join me in doing so.

May God continue to bless our military men and women – past and present – and may we never forget nor take for granted their service.

To help commemorate the importance of Memorial Day, I have ordered that all state flags be lowered to half-staff from sunrise until noon on Monday, May 28, 2012.

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