Elizabeth Dole Foundation
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Voice Awards Blog Week: Memorial Day

Voice Awards Blog Week: Memorial Day

This Memorial Day, we asked our blog community to focus on Remembrance and Reflection, remembering those who made the ultimate sacrifice and responding to this question:

On this important weekend of remembrance and reflection, share with us how you:

  • Honor the memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation; and
  • Care for and honor those who have lost a loved one while serving our nation.

Pictured: Aaron M. Causey, SFC (ret), husband of Dole Caregiver Fellow Kathleen Causey, at the grave of SGT Kenneth Bennett, Arlington Cemetery, VA.

This Memorial Day, the Foundation would like to take a moment to reflect on the memories of those loved ones lost in the line of duty. Our staff has not been untouched by war, and we are grateful every day for the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedom and security.

Memorial Day is a difficult time for the military caregivers we support. Many will spend this weekend honoring and remembering those who were lost, while also doing their best to support their veteran, who may be struggling to process their grief on this day. Survivor’s guilt may plague many of the veterans, whether they served in Vietnam or Iraq, as they reflect on the loss of their brothers and sisters in arms. Compounding the difficulty of this day are the well-meaning but misguided attempts to ‘celebrate’ this day – television ads spotlighting the latest Memorial Day Sale, or well-wishers congratulating and thanking veterans for their service. Such reminders can be triggering for those veterans who are already struggling to keep the focus on the fallen. And through it all, the caregivers are there.

Throughout Memorial Day weekend, military caregivers will work to soothe these effects of war and ensure that the grief and loss felt by their veterans is addressed in a healthy way. If you are a caregiver in need of support this weekend, we encourage you to visit our vetted resource directory, to find support for both yourself and your veteran. Through Hidden Heroes, we hope to honor and support the military community this weekend and throughout the year.

From the staff at the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, we wish you a safe and healthy Memorial Day weekend. As we close out this post, we would like to recognize a few of the many fallen heroes we honor this Memorial Day and every day. 

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter the words, but to live by them.”  President John F. Kennedy

LCpl Joseph E Rodewald, USMC 3/5, Afghanistan

Army Staff SGT. Ricky. L.Crockett.  D Company, 51st Signal Battalion, XVIII Airborne Corps, Iraq

Left to right: Joe Morabito, LEP, Todd Clark, LTC, Jaimie Leonard, LTC all 10th Mountain, all KIA June 8, 2013 Afghanistan

SGT. Blake Stephens and SPC. Kyle Little KIA 8 May 2007 HHC 3BDE 3ID Salman Pak, Iraq

SPC Clint R Gertson, US Army, 1/24 Stryker Combat Brigade, KIA Mosul, Iraq 19 Feb 2005

CAPT. William W. Jacobsen, Jr. US Army 1/25 Stryker Combat Brigade, KIA Mosul, Iraq

SPC Jason K. Edens, Died of Wounds 4/26/12, Served in and was wounded in Afghanistan, Assigned to the 13th cavalry regiment


Please also be sure to read these special Memorial Day blog posts from our community members:

Grief, Despair & Hope: The Journey of a Fallen Soldier’s Wife” by Dole Caregiver Fellow Tiffany Smiley.

Memorial Day Tips & Tricks” by Hidden Heroes Caregiver Community Member Lisa Villont.

Land of the Free, Home of the Brave: Remembering the Fallen” by Dole Caregiver Fellow Precious Goodson.