What is Circle of Life Doing to Honor Memorial Day and the Veterans that We Serve?
Circle of Life Hospice will be holding a Memorial Day ceremony on Friday, May 22, 2020, at 9:30 AM on the lawn at the Earlene Howard Hospice Home, 901 Jones Rd., Springdale, AR.

Circle of Life will place 336 American flags at both facilities in Springdale and Bentonville, to represent the lives of the 336 veteran patients served at Circle of Life in 2019.  Chaplain, Shane Pair, will facilitate the ceremony, and Mike Ford from the VFW Post 3031 will play TAPS on the bugle.

Red poppy pins will be distributed to wear at the ceremony, as the international sign of remembrance. The red poppy is worn to honor the fallen and support the living who have worn our nation’s uniform.

Over 1,000 handwritten cards have been mailed to loved ones of patients who were served over the last year, with special acknowledgment of the significance of Memorial Day as they reflect and remember their loved ones. To honor current veteran patients, packages of cookies, the “In Flanders Field” poem, and a red poppy pin will be delivered to all veteran patients on Circle of Life hospice care.

The Story of the Red Poppy
After World War I, the poppy flourished in Europe. Scientists attributed the growth to soils in France and Belgium becoming enriched with lime from the rubble left by the war. From the dirt and mud grew a beautiful red poppy. The red poppy came to symbolize the blood shed during battle following the publication of the wartime poem “In Flanders Fields.” The poem was written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, M.D. while serving on the front lines.

From the battlefields of World War I, weary soldiers brought home the memory of a barren landscape transformed by wild poppies, red as the blood that had soaked the soil. By that miracle of nature, the spirit of their lost comrades lived on. The poppy became a symbol of the sacrifice of lives in war and represented the hope that none had died in vain. The American Legion Auxiliary poppy has continued to bloom for the casualties of four wars, its petals of paper bound together for veterans by veterans, reminding America each year that the men and women who have served and died for their country deserve to be remembered. 

In Flanders Fields
In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row.
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Resources and Education:
What is the significance of Memorial Day?
https://www.militarytimes.com/video/2018/05/25/a-memorial-day-tribute-to-those-who-made-the-ultimate-sacrifice-2/

What is the Difference Between Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day?  What Do I Say to a Veteran on Memorial Day?
https://www.military.com/memorial-day/its-time-you-know-difference-between-veterans-day-and-memorial-day.html

Stay safe and enjoy your day off, but also take some time to reflect on what Memorial Day means to so many families.

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