Memorial Day – What’s It All About?

May 22, 2013 - Posted By Vets Vehicles

Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for the men and woman who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it began sometime after the Civil War with formal and informal ceremonies at the graves of soldiers who had fallen in battle.

In May 1868, the Grand Army of the Republic, a Union veterans organization, designated May 30 as a day for the nation to decorate deceased soldiers with flowers. Arlington National Cemetery held the first Memorial Day observance that year.

By the end of the 19th century, Memorial Day ceremonies were widely held throughout the country on May 30. After WWI, Memorial Day was expanded to observe the deaths of soldiers who died in all American Wars. In 1971, the Federal government declared Memorial Day a national holiday to be celebrated on the last Monday of May.

Ways to Observe Memorial Day and Support Veterans

  • Visit cemeteries and memorials
  • Attend Memorial Day ceremonies
  • Volunteer to place an American Flag on each grave in national cemeteries
  • Observe a minute of silence at 3:00 PM, local time
  • Attend a Memorial Day parade, festival, fair or concert such as the National Memorial Day Concert Run for charity on Memorial Day weekend
  • Volunteer to support events such as the National Memorial Day Parade
  • Donate to veterans and military support groups

Check our Facebook page to learn about other creative ways to observe Memorial Day this year.