What were you doing yesterday for Memorial Day? Did you have a barbecue? Did you go on a trip? Did you hang out with some friends at a bonfire? Did you spend your day laying in the sun at the sand bar?

Did you stop and take a moment to appreciate what yesterday was all about?

Don’t get me wrong. I love a three-day weekend as much as the next girl, but I also love that I live in America, land of the free and home of the brave.

I love that I am able to attend college, worship how I choose and that I have the freedom to write this very column.

I owe that ability to the men and women who have laid down their lives in the name of freedom for people like you and me so we may live how we please.

I am a supporter of the men and women in the United States Military. I’m not saying I support war, and I’m not saying that I don’t; that’s not what this is about.

I’m not saying you need to support the war.

What I am saying is I hope you took a moment yesterday, and if not yesterday, then today, or any day for that matter, to appreciate the men and women who died so that we all are able to live the lives that we do.

If you are reading this paper and have stuck around long enough to get to this point, I hope you really think about what those great men and women who have served and are currently serving in the military risk daily.

The men and women who died serving our country are what yesterday was about. Not the start of summer vacation, not the sales at the mall, and not the hotdogs or the hamburgers.

Regardless of the political party you choose to identify with, or not identify with, we all should be able to agree on one thing — the men and women who serve, and have served, this country deserve our respect and admiration.

In the famous words of Lee Greenwood, “I’m proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free, and I won’t forget the men who died who gave that right to me.”

I hope you will remember what it really means to be free and live in a country that has so much potential and opportunities and gives each of us so many opportunities. I hope you will focus on the men and women who served our country and gave you the ability to attend BYU–Idaho, be a Mormon and live in this great nation.