On May 5, 1868, JOHN A. LOGAN, Commander-in-Chief of the Army in his General Orders no.11, Washington, D.C., called for the first Memorial Day to recall and remember all those soldiers who had died and were buried in “almost every city and state” during the Civil War.
The tradition that started in May of 1868 continues today. I wanted to pay homage to all of the builders, private contractors, SEABEES (Construction Batallions), and members of the US Army Corps of Engineers who fought for and built the roads, ports, landing strips, barracks, housing, facilities of all types and who died performing their duties in war theaters around the world. Many of their headstones will note that the individual who is buried there served in one of the military construction or engineering services that made it possible to move men, trucks, armor, and all the provisions necessary to keep our forces fed and provisioned during the wars that the US has been involved in since May of 1868.
Those American soldiers who served in the construction services and died in the process paved the way for us to be here today. We need to remember their sacrifice for us and the continued sacrifices of their families on this Memorial Day.