Once again our Memorial Day weekend serves as the traditional summer kickoff.  Families, friends, union brothers and sisters will gather in a variety of locations to fire up the grills which indulging in our favorite past times.  Whether you are gathered in celebration or relaxation, take some time to reflect on what this holiday is all about.  Reflect on the legacies and the memories of our loved ones that have gone before us.  Pay tribute to our fallen heroes; and remember the servicemen and women who cannot be with us this year because they are in active service protecting our freedoms.  Reach out as Americans to those who have stood with you, by you and for you, to let them know that they are not alone.

Having endured some incredibly tough years, we are fortunate to now have the advantage of a more stimulated economy, resulting in jobs for our members.  All working in our industry know better than to rest our laurels on the positive economic cycles.  While LU 68 continues to positively impact the lives of many, we must sustain our personal skills, education and initiative to provide value for our own future.  Local indicators show continued growth in our jurisdiction staying ahead of the national recovery rate.  This is best exhibited by the projects that are in their preliminary stages and will have increased manpower requirements through summer.

We still are the best trained skilled tradesman and maintain the highest safety standards in the construction industry.  Practice the safety training that you have received by making it a part of your home and family activities.  Share these summer safety reminders with all including topics on water activities like boating, swimming and fishing.  Teach and supervise your beloved little helpers before allowing the use of any tools and always secure the power tools out of their reach.  Discuss the numerous hazards related to recreational activities as they apply.  Be most cautious using fireworks, managing campfires and on the road while making those summer trips.  Remember, while it is important for you to come home safe every day, it is equally important for you to come home knowing that your family was safe while you were away.

So celebrate Memorial Day as a day when our great soldiers laid down their lives so that we can continue to grow in a healthy, peaceful and free environment.