It is easy for us to remember those who died in the more recent conflicts, and for my generation it is our friends, brothers and cousins who were lost during the Vietnam conflict. The Spanish-American war is one of those smaller skirmishes that lasted less than a year and focused mostly on Spanish holdings in Cuba and The Phillipines. As a reminder that our National Guard has been mobilized for conflicts much earlier than our current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, so it was in 1898. Most notable about the Spanish-American War was the sinking of the battleship USS Maine, and Teddy Roosevelt's charge up San Juan Hill. It also signified the end of Spain's empire.
As I wandered between the rows of gravestones, I could read the names of each who fought. Some perished, and others returned home to resume their lives...though one cannot help but wonder how they may have been transformed though the experience. One cannot escape the same question for those of our current generation.
I uttered a "thank you" to all of those buried here...and to all who served in other conflicts...like those who lay in the fields of Flanders.
(For related Memorial Day Musings, you can visit http://musingsbypaul.blogspot.com/2009/05/thoughts-on-memorial-day-2009.html)