Military Photo of the Day: Memorial Day 2024

Honoring all American heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

By Tom Sileo Published on May 27, 2024

The American flag flies at half mast at the Normandy American Cemetery in France during a Memorial Day ceremony held on May 28, 2023.

Memorial Day is a moment for all Americans to pause and honor each and every member of the U.S. military who laid his or her life down for our country. As we remember these fallen heroes, Memorial Day is also a time to salute and pray for those left behind: America’s Gold Star families.




While choosing today’s Military Photo of the Day, I came across the above photo, which was taken last Memorial Day by U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Alexander Skripnichuk at the Normandy American Cemetery in France. Soon, World War II veterans, family members and dignitaries will gather in Normandy to mark the 80th anniversary of D-Day on June 6.

After selecting the image, I noticed a cross on the left marking the grave of a fallen U.S. Army soldier: Staff Sgt. George C. Flickinger. The cross includes his name, rank, unit, home state and the date of his death: July 5, 1944.

Upon searching for more information about this fallen American hero, I learned that he was from Port Royal in Juniata County, which is in central Pennyslvania. Staff Sgt. Flickinger was born on August 8, 1919, which means he was just over a month short of his 25th birthday when he was killed in action and posthumously awarded the Purple Heart.

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Thanks to the Airborne Museum in Normandy, I was also able to find the below photo of Staff Sgt. Flickinger, who made the ultimate sacrifice at age 24 so we could live in a world not enslaved by the evil Nazi regime he was fighting against.

“Here, in this place where the West held together, let us make a vow to our dead,” President Ronald Reagan said in Normandy on the 40th anniversary of D-Day in 1984. “Let us show them by our actions that we understand what they died for. Let our actions say to them the words for which (General) Matthew Ridgway listened: ‘I will not fail thee nor forsake thee.'”

Thank you, Staff Sgt. George Flickinger, for sacrificing your tomorrows for our todays. On this Memorial Day, we ask Americans to make the same pledge that President Reagan made nearly 40 years ago: “I will not fail thee nor forsake thee.”

Memorial Day: George Flickinger

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