< Back
President Casey Murray's Memorial Day Message

President Casey Murray's Memorial Day Message

May 30, 2022

The Last Full Measure of Devotion

Casey Murray, President

On this day, I'm reminded of the short drive from the Humphrey Terminal to the crew hotel in Minneapolis, MN, which passes by the rows of tombstones, chalky white and alike in their appearance, save for the name and rank of the U.S. armed forces members interred beneath the manicured grounds of the Fort Snelling National Cemetery. How often do we pass by the perfect rows, exactly spaced and symmetrical, and pause for just a moment to reflect upon what President Abraham Lincoln described as the "last full measure of devotion" that was given by so many of its fallen, in our nation's wars and conflicts, on foreign deployments, and in defense of the homeland?

The history of the brave men and women whose sacrifice we commemorate today are found all around us while out on the line. Years ago, while on an overnight in Washington D.C., I walked from the Arlington National Cemetery to the United States Marine Corps War Memorial, which depicts the February 23, 1945, raising of the American flag atop Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima. It was a serene location, and I stayed until dusk watching the flag, always at mast and illuminated at night by presidential proclamation. From that vantage point, I could look across the Roosevelt Bridge spanning the Potomac River to the Lincoln Memorial, where carved upon the wall within are these poignant words from the Gettysburg Address:

"... from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

Let us never forget the price of that devotion. For those who are remembering loved ones lost in the line of duty, I offer on behalf of myself and SWAPA my sincere respect and gratitude for the sacrifice that they made for us all.


Yours in Unity,