From Touchstone's Mere Comments:
Imagine what it might be like, not to be forgotten, but to know, as you are growing old, that you will soon be forgotten -- that, in a few short years after your death, no one will care for you, or will preserve your wisdom, or uphold what you stood for, or honor your grave. Would that not be like dying before dying? Isn't there a pathetic rootlessness of time as well as of place? Maybe we can define modern life as that truncated and diminished state of having no home to call your own, no country to serve, no family tradition, maybe no family at all, no piously tended grave, no past, and no future.
If that's the case, then our educators do a very fine job preparing children for modern life. They too sever them from home, country, family, the past, and the future. In the April Touchstone there's a brief report of a study done by a Stanford professor of education, who asked 2000 high school students to name the ten most famous Americans from the time Columbus stepped foot on the continent to the present. The choices are telling... read the rest and the list and some readers' lists as well, here
Care to add your own top 10?