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May 26, 2014

Let's make sure we honor our Veterans today:

Memorial Day – Celebrated on the last Monday in May, this is a United States Federal Holiday and is a day for remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. It was originally known as Decoration Day, as I mentioned two days ago, and celebrations began shortly after the Civil War to commemorate both Union and Confederate soldiers who died in that war. It has since been extended to honor all Americans who died in all of the wars we have been involved in. Veteran's grave stones or crosses are typically decorated for this day with an American flag and sometimes with wreaths and flowers as well.

Fiji Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna Day - On the last Monday in May, the people of Fiji celebrate the life of one of their most important leaders, Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna.  He was a hero in WWI and then became a politician who helped Fiji gain independence from Great Britain.  He didn’t see that goal reached because he died on May 30, 1958, twelve years before independence was achieved.

National Blueberry Cheesecake Day – Any kind of cheesecake is delicious but if you're a fan of blueberries, which I am, then delicious becomes heavenly.

Sally Ride Day – On this day in 1951, Sally Ride was born. Sally, of course, became an astronaut when women just didn't do that, and in 1983, at 32 years old, became the first American woman to enter space and orbit the earth. She had another space flight in 1984 and between the two flights, spent more than 343 hours in space. She was the only person to serve on the investigation board for both the Challenger and the Columbia disasters and she formed her own company, Sally Ride Science that creates entertaining science programs for students, with an emphasis on girls. She died of pancreatic cancer in 2012.

To celebrate today, watch a local Memorial Day parade while you eat blueberry cheesecake and tell all the children in your vicinity about Sally Ride and her dedication to spreading a love of science among girls.  Then take a trip to Fiji to celebrate Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna.