Monday Morning Boost: Honoring Legacy & Sacrifice

Monday Morning Boost: Honoring Legacy & Sacrifice

On this Memorial Day, I honor the legacy of my parents and grandparents, even though I am not able to visit their gravesites and place flowers. Their memories are woven into the fabric of who I am, and I carry their love, wisdom, and sacrifices with me every day. I strive to honor their legacy by keeping their memories alive, sharing their stories and the moments that defined who they were. In the same way, I strive to honor the veterans who have served our country.

Memorial Day grants us each the occasion–even the obligation–to remember the bravery and dedication of those who served our country, especially those who have paid the ultimate price for our freedom. These heroes, whether soldiers, sailors, airmen, or marines, all had stories, families, and dreams that were cut short in service to our nation. They lived for something greater than themselves and sacrificed for the greater good of our country.

This day is also a reminder to teach future generations about the value of freedom and the cost at which it comes. By sharing the stories of our parents, grandparents, and fallen heroes, we ensure that their legacies live on and continue to inspire others. The act of remembering is not confined to a single day but is a continual process of honoring and reflecting on the values they stood for–courage, selflessness, and dedication to a cause greater than oneself.

We honor their past by carrying forward the principles and values they stood for and by striving to live our lives in a way that reflects the love, courage, and dedication they showed. This is how we keep their memories alive and ensure that their sacrifices are never forgotten.

While I may not be able to place flowers on each grave of those I remember, my heart is full of gratitude, love, and respect for who they were.

This Memorial Day, let us each take a moment to pause in remembrance and honor those who have gone before us. Let their legacies inspire us to create stories of love and greatness in our own lives. May we never forget the profound impact of their sacrifices and the enduring gift of their legacy.


Among the courageous souls who have paid this dear price are Marine Lance Corporal Michael Allred, Army Sergeant First Class Ronald Wood, and Army Major Brent Taylor. These valiant heroes gave their lives while serving our country, fighting for the cause of freedom, and proudly representing the Red, White, and Blue.

I strive also to never forget the 22 military veterans, on average, who are killed by suicide every day. Two of these were men I served with in Iraq, wounded by the mental scars of combat: Army Specialist Sheldon Loveless and Army Sergeant First Class Clyde Kramme.


Nestled on the eastern side of the cemetery in Hyde Park, Utah, rests the obscure burial site of Civil War Veteran Private Joseph Cain. The inscription on his tombstone reveals that Cain served as a private in Company B of the 50th Regiment in the Illinois Infantry. Born on September 30, 1841, he passed away on February 16, 1907.

My introduction to Private Cain came through Dorothy Cook Izatt, a resident of Hyde Park and a neighbor. When her father was a child, Cain had been friends with her grandfather. Dorothy, a widow of a World War II veteran, felt a deep connection to Cain and diligently tended to his grave, along with the other veterans in her family. Prior to her passing in 2010, she entrusted me with the responsibility of caring for Cain’s resting place once she was no longer able to do so. It has been a privilege to carry out this duty in her memory.


Throughout the years, as I have written about each of these men on numerous occasions, you may wonder why I persist in sharing their stories.

The answer is quite simple.

I will never forget. I will always stand tall for those who served our country, especially when they can no longer stand for themselves.

For those who on the battlefields of war offered up the utmost sacrifice, from these “honored dead” as President Abraham Lincoln softly spoke at Gettysburg, may “we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion–that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.”


Have a great Monday! Thanks for letting me share.

I Love You, friend!

Les Patterson

p.s. Take 13 minutes today to pause, remember, and honor the legacies that have shaped you.



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