Memorial Day 2012

Back in the 90’s when I was a First Sergeant in the Army, I was asked to start writing some Non Commissioned Officer Development classes and leadership subjects.  I wrote a few articles and even had one on leadership published in the NCO Journal the Army’s Magazine for Non Commissioned Officer news, issues, and discussion.  While I was on my way to a promising writing career (which never happened) I dabbled in some poetry also.  A Retired Command Sergeant Major and author of “the Three Meter Zone” saw some of my writing and asked if he could publish some of it on his website.  Of course I was game.
A few years back (2008) I posted this poem here on the blog.  It is a poem I wrote in honor of Memorial Day.  It is still fitting now.  As I re read it tonight I could not help but notice that since the poem was written we have been a few more campaigns.  The post in 2008 also made mention of our Scout Troop placing the flags up at Willamette National Cemetery.   That year we (the Thunderbird District) placed 133,000 flags.  This year we placed 140,000.
So here is my poem for Memorial Day.
Have a Great Scouting Day!

Rise up
Rise up O’ men of Valor,
A Nation in debt to thee
For the freedom of this Republic,
You fought and died for me.

Rise up O’ men of Honor,
The fields of battle did you go
From Lexington and Concord,
To the Bulge and all its snow.
Gettysburg to Normandy Vietnam and Somalia
You gave it all for me.

So Rise up O’ men of Courage,
For without you we do not share
The freedom of this nation,
Is ours because you were there.Freedoms blood soaked on foreign lands
A soldier’s cry with outstretched hands
Do not forget the price they paid,
They gave it all for Freedoms sake.

Rise up O’ men of Valor
Your Honor and Courage reign.
For the price of Freedom you understood
But paid it just the same.

Memorial Day 2000
© Gerald J. Schleining Jr-US ARMY

One comment

  1. Thank you sir! I was looking for something to read to our Cub Scouts prior to our annual flag placing ceremony and I found your poem. Your words perfectly convey the sacrifices we honor on Memorial Day. Reading this aloud before we place flags will now be a new tradition with the scouts of Pack 788 in Summerville, SC. Thanks again!!


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