All Access Will Be Closed Monday For Memorial Day

All Access Will Be Closed Monday For Memorial Day

By the end of the 19th century, Memorial Day ceremonies were being held on 30 May throughout the nation.

The holiday was originally called "Decoration Day" and was first observed on May 5, 1868, a date chosen because it didn't fall on the anniversary of any particular battle, according to History.com.

Memorial Day unofficially marks the beginning of summer for many Americans, meaning the roads are typically packed with the first rush of weekend travelers.

Is it okay to celebrate in other ways with friends and family on Memorial Day? It meant ceremonies at cemeteries, laying of wreaths, the playing of Taps.

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Memorial Day is about honoring those who made the final sacrifice in service to their country. Others, though, look at the holiday as an opportunity for a quick out-of-town getaway or plan to spend the day at a backyard barbecue with the neighbors. Families still do get together but the spirit of patriotic remembrance is absent. According to another RAND report, Hidden Heroes: America's Military Caregivers, about one-third of military caregivers are spouses, and nearly 40 percent are under age 30. There are many reasons for this. Service members from all over the Military District of Washington gather at Arlington National Cemetery. Unfortunately, people are still dying on behalf of our country today. West Point. Fewer than 4 percent of the 16 million Americans who served in WWII are still living. You've probably encountered some of the ignorance and apathy yourselves. Then again, if you'd been in Pierre in the fall of 2006 for the dedication of the Vietnam memorial by Capitol Lake and seen the tears and smiles on the faces of the Vietnam vets when speaker after speaker said, "Welcome home, " you might think the former president understated things.

In 1971, as part of a larger modification of federal holidays, the day of observance was shifted from May 30 to the final Monday in May - a change opposed by many veterans groups. After the Civil War, people began honoring those who died while serving in the military. But rising from the ashes of every war America has fought is the flag of freedom and the sacred remembrance of those who gave their lives raising that banner through the conflicts that it may wave over us today.

Chances are there isn't a family in the country that doesn't have a relative, a brother, sister, father, uncle, grandfather, cousin or someone they know that died in one of this country's many wars. "Oh, it's our history's heritage and I just love it and we just did so much years ago to preserve this nation and the union, and this is why I believe this is why I got into it, because my ancestor was a medal of honor victor at the crater", said Knight, the camp chaplain, and a Korean War veteran. Please feel free to bring a folding chair and umbrella for your comfort.

How will you show your loyalty to our country and appreciation to those who made the ultimate sacrifice? The least any of us can do is pay respect with silence.

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