Granholm Honors Fallen Soldiers

Contact: Michelle Begnoche 517-335-6397

May 25, 2007

Governor orders flags flown at half-staff on Memorial Day

LANSING - In her weekly radio address, Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today praised the bravery of thousands of Michigan citizens serving in the armed forces.  Earlier this week, Granholm met with families of Michigan soldiers who have died while on active duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.  This is the fourth year the governor has hosted the memorial to honor Michigan's fallen soldiers and their families.
 
"The fathers and mothers, husbands and wives, sons and daughters of these heroes have experienced incalculable loss, but they are proud of the sacrifice that their loved ones have made," Granholm said.  "Memorial Day is our time to salute these fine Michigan citizens - just as we should do every day of the year."
 
Granholm reported that the Michigan Army and Air National Guard has 1,543 service members currently deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Governor Granholm issued Executive Order 2006-10 recognizing Memorial Day and ordering flags be flown at half-staff to honor those who have died in service to the United States, making the ultimate sacrifice to defend this nation's freedom.  This year, flags will fly half-staff until noon on Monday, May 28.

Memorial Day this year comes at the conclusion of Michigan Week.  This is an annual celebration of the best that Michigan has to offer, from cultural activities to outdoor recreation to Michigan's diverse heritage and dynamic communities.
  
"On Memorial Day, I hope you can take advantage of some of what makes Michigan so great," Granholm said.  "And whether you are working or relaxing, take a moment to salute those who have served in the armed forces and say a prayer for the success and safe return of all those serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, and around the world."

The governor's weekly radio address is released each Friday morning and may be heard on broadcast stations across the state through an affiliation with the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.  The address will also be available on the Governor's website on Mondays as a podcast for general distribution to personal MP3 players and home computers.

Broadcasters Note:  Governor Granholm's radio address can be accessed through Sunday evening exclusively through the Members Only page of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Website.

Publishers Note:  The text of today's address is attached.

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GOVERNOR JENNIFER M. GRANHOLM
May 25, 2007

This is Governor Jennifer Granholm.

As I speak, the Michigan Army and Air National Guard has 1,543 service members deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Countless other Michigan citizens are stationed all around the world serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.

Since last year at this time, 56 of these heroes have made the ultimate sacrifice, 56 Michigan citizens losing their lives while on active duty.

This week I had the opportunity to meet with some of their families, and the families of other service members who have died in combat in recent years.

The fathers and mothers, husbands and wives, the sons and daughters of these heroes have experienced incalculable loss, but they are so proud of the sacrifice that their loved ones have made.

Memorial Day is our time to salute these fine Michigan citizens - just as we should do every day of the year.  As Governor, it is a tremendous privilege to salute them loudly and proudly, on behalf of the state of Michigan.

The Michigan men and women in uniform who have died are true champions of democracy, liberty and freedom.

They represent the best in Michigan, so it is appropriate that Memorial Day this year comes at the conclusion of Michigan Week, a celebration of the best that Michigan has to offer.

The week includes local celebrations of all the things we love about our state - our diverse heritage, our libraries and museums, our lakes and beautiful natural environment, our communities, and our shared hope for a bright future.

On Memorial Day, I hope you can take advantage of some of what makes Michigan so great.

And whether you are working or relaxing, take a moment to salute those who have served in the armed forces.

In their honor, I have ordered all flags to be lowered to half staff until noon on Monday. And, we can all share our thanks with those men and women who continue to serve, as well as their families - and say a prayer for the success and safe return of all those serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world.

If you are stationed abroad right now, the people of Michigan thank you - all 10 million of us. We know that we are able to enjoy our great, magnificent nation and magnificent state because of your courage and strength. We will always be thankful for your bravery.

God bless you and thank you for listening.



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