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Memorial Day

24. May 2010 by Christy 0 Comments

America’s Memorial Day is a federal holiday observed on the last Monday in May. On this day, Americans honor the U.S. men and women who died while in military service. This year’s holiday falls on May 31st and many people consider Memorial Day to be the unofficial start of the summer season.

Americans initially created Memorial Day to remember the approximately 620,000 men who died in the country’s Civil War. U.S. citizens expanded the holiday after World War I, and today Americans honor all fallen soldiers on Memorial Day. While the holiday has always been significant, it is now especially important due to the losses America has suffered in the ongoing war in Iraq. 

Most businesses and schools close on Memorial Day, and many Americans enjoy the day off by attending local parades or firework shows. Another popular tradition is to have a picnic or barbecue with family and friends. As a sign of respect, businesses, government entities, and private citizens fly the American flag at half-staff. Volunteers also place flags at the graves in national cemeteries.

Here are a few pictures from past Memorial Days.