Remembering Those Who Gave All
Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed annually on the last Monday of May. It is a day to honor and remember the men and women who have died while serving in the country's armed forces. The history of Memorial Day dates back to the Civil War, when it was originally called Decoration Day.
Decoration Day was first observed on May 30, 1868, to honor the fallen Union soldiers of the Civil War. General John A. Logan, leader of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans, declared that flowers should be placed on the graves of soldiers as a symbol of respect and remembrance. This practice soon spread to other cities and states, and Decoration Day became a national tradition.
After World War I, Decoration Day became known as Memorial Day and became a day to remember all of the fallen soldiers who had served in the armed forces, not just those who fought in the Civil War. In 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress and was officially recognized as a day to honor all American soldiers who have died in military service.
Today, Memorial Day is a day of remembrance and reflection. Americans gather at cemeteries, monuments, and memorials to honor the fallen and pay their respects. Flag-raising ceremonies, parades, and other patriotic events are held throughout the country, and many people take the day off from work to spend time with family and friends. Despite its evolution over the years, the purpose of Memorial Day remains the same: to honor and remember the brave men and women who have given their lives in the service of their country.