U.S. Coast Guard veteran Darin Bibeau figured a quote from a famous U.S. Army general summed up what Memorial Day means to him.
“Legendary General George S. Patton once said, ‘It’s foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God such men lived,’” Bibeau said. “General Patton was absolutely right.”
Bibeau, a Carmel resident, delivered the keynote address at the City of Carmel Memorial Day ceremony May 28 at The Tarkington at the Center for the Performing Arts.
“Memorial Day is a day not just to remember but to celebrate and honor those who are not with us any longer,” Bibeau said. “In my years of service, none of my brothers and sisters ever wanted to be mourned. This is not why we joined the military. I’m proud to have served eight years active duty honorably.”
Bibeau said he was deployed to many nations around the world, often celebrating Memorial Day on foreign soil.
Bibeau said the reason Americans can enjoy cookouts and the Indianapolis 500 is thanks to service members.
“We must remember the sacrifices they have made in honor of our beloved country,” Bibeau said.
Bibeau said he was personally celebrating many people, including family members and friends.
“A lost family member in any war should never be forgotten,” Bibeau said. “Today is the time we remember those men and women who helped deliver us our freedom and didn’t return home. We remember their achievements, their courage and their dedication. While we have this one day set aside, let us be mindful we should do this every day.”
Bibeau encouraged audience members to volunteer at the VFW or American Legion, thank a veteran or listen to their stories.
U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz, a Republican from Indiana’s 5th District, said she wanted “to express my deepest gratitude and appreciation to all men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice. I would also like to thank all current service members and veterans for what you are doing and have done to keep our republic free and strong.”