What is Memorial Day?
The history of Memorial Day goes back to the 19th century. People who lost their friends and relatives in the Civil War started to decorate the graves of their dead with flowers, wreaths, and flags. That is why the initial name of the holiday was Decoration Day. After World War I, all Americans adopted this remembrance tradition of the Southern states and devoted it to all those who died in any military action. We are honoring men and women who gave their lives for our country up to now. Today people go to cemeteries to decorate the graves and pay homage to their dead. Many Americans spend Memorial Day getting together with their family for a picnic or sports event. Our hearts are with the families of our Fallen Soldiers, and we are forever grateful for our Active Duty Military, our Veterans, and their families.
Memorial Day Traditions
Cities and towns across the United States host Memorial Day parades each year, often incorporating military personnel and members of veterans’ organizations. Some of the largest parades take place in Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C.Americans also observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries and memorials. Some people wear a red poppy in remembrance of those fallen in war—a tradition that began with a World War I poem. On a less somber note, many people take weekend trips or throw parties and barbecues on the holiday, perhaps because Memorial Day weekend—the long weekend comprising the Saturday and Sunday before Memorial Day and Memorial Day itself—unofficially marks the beginning of summer.