This Memorial Day

As we get ready to celebrate Memorial Day Weekend and the start of our 2015 summer season, it is important for us to remember the real reason we all celebrate this weekend. We gather to remember the people who died serving our country in the armed forces. Chances are we all know at least one person who gave their life in the service of the United States. On this Monday, Memorial Day, the people of the United States of America are encouraged to visit and place a flag on the graves of those who died serving our country. Also, at 3:00 PM local time a moment of remembrance should be observed for all of those who lost their lives protecting our freedom.

Brief History of Memorial Day

Memorial Day started as Decoration Day shortly after the end of the United States Civil War. Families would gather and towns would have parades to honor those who died as a result of the Civil War. After the United State’s involvement in World War I, the Federal holiday evolved to honor all those who died protecting the United States. For decades Memorial Day was celebrated on May 30, but in 1968 Congress passed the Uniformed Monday Holiday Act. This Act moved Memorial Day to the last Monday in May to create a three day weekend.

Continuing The Tradition

For decades Memorial Day was celebrated with parades through towns and cities, as well as placing flags on the graves of those who died fighting in war. While some continue these traditions, many younger people do not even know why we celebrate Memorial Day. This Memorial Day bring back part of the tradition. An observance you can do right at home is: “In traditional observance, the flag of the United States is raised briskly to the top of the staff and then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains only until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day. The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service of their country. At noon, their memory is raised by the living, who resolve not to let their sacrifice be in vain, but to rise up in their stead and continue the fight for liberty and justice for all.”

More Information

History.com

USMemorialDay.org

VA.gov

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