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What is Memorial Day all about?

What is Memorial Day all about?

Most people in the US associate Memorial Day with the beginning of summer. Pools open up and picnic spots fill up with the scent of barbecue. But as the name (kind of) suggests, it is a day to remember those who have died serving in the US Armed Forces.

After the Civil World War, there was a need and desire to honor war heroes. Memorial Day was then called Decoration Day, as people would decorate the graves of those who died fighting for their country.

To this day, many people visit cemeteries on Memorial Day and place an American flag on the graves of those who served the country. You will see the US flag on many buildings at half-mast from dawn until noon. It is a public (federal) holiday, so most corporates, schools and government offices are closed.

People take a moment to commemorate those who have made sacrifices for the privileges we enjoy today. Some things you can do to join them are:

  • Honor the fallen by pausing for a moment at 3pm local time, which is the National Moment of Remembrance
  • Attend or Volunteer at a parade or a memorial service
  • Visit a battlefield, fort, museum or monument
  • Read up on why poppies are called the “flowers of remembrance” and what is the “White Table” tradition
  • Watch famous Memorial Day speeches by US Presidents on YouTube or listen to the Memorial Day Concert on NPR
  • Pay your respects to Veterans around you

Showing gratitude and counting your blessings are a great way to start the summer. Hope you have a great Memorial Day!

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