What is Memorial Day?
Memorial Day 2021 is coming up; it's important to remember that this holiday is much more than an extended weekend. Memorial Day is a day of remembrance to the brave American heroes who have sacrificed their lives while honorably serving our country. Every year this holiday is observed on the last Monday of May; this year, Memorial Day is on Monday, May 31, 2021.
Why do we celebrate Memorial Day?
Memorial Day was officially recognized as a federal holiday in 1971, but the traditions of this holiday go way back to post-Civil War times. Originally, Memorial Day was known as Decoration Day and was a day to honor fallen soldiers by decorating their graves with flowers, wreaths, and American flags.
Decorating for Memorial Day traditions began shortly after the Civil War when the leader of the Northern Civil War Veterans' organization requested May 30th to be a day of remembrance to honor the lives of the Union and Confederate soldiers who died during the war. According to the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, it is believed that this date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.
Before World War I, Memorial Day was set aside to observe only those who fought and died in the Civil War. Today it has evolved to be a national holiday of remembrance for all military personnel who have lost their lives serving the United States.
Flag Flying & Half-Staff Holiday
Remember to fly your American flag proudly on Memorial Day 2021, as it is a national flag flying holiday steeped in 50 years of tradition!
The American flag should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until noon, then raised briskly to the top of the staff until sunset, in honor of the sacrifices made by our nation’s heroes.
3 Ways to Honor Memorial Day, “Decoration Day” Traditions Today
1. One Minute of Silence at 3:00 PM
Although we may celebrate this day with a family cookout or a trip to the beach, it is essential that we remember that these freedoms are brought to us by the individuals who have sacrificed their lives. Every Memorial Day at 3 P.M. local time, Americans are encouraged to pause for one minute of silence. This pause is known as the National Moment of Remembrance and is an act that was signed into law by the U.S. Congress in 2000.
2. Decorating Graves
Embellish a bouquet of flowers with a dozen small (4" x 6") American stick flags.
3. Go to a Parade or Memorial Day Ceremony
Make an impact by handing out American stick flags without breaking the bank. 144 American-made stick flags cost under $75!
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