Ways to Honor Memorial Day

Here are some ways you can honor Memorial Day throughout the weekend

By Courtney Cooper

The U.S. flag flies over the opening ceremony at the 2017 DoD Warrior Games in Chicago, Ill. (Photo by Courtney Cooper)


Memorial Day is a U.S. holiday that honors the fallen military personnel. The holiday falls on the last Monday in May every year. For many decades, Memorial Day was on May 30, until Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May. This was to create a three-day weekend for federal employees. It wasn’t until 1971 that the change went into effect. The same law also stated Memorial Day as a federal holiday. This year, the holiday is Monday, May 28. There are traditions all around the U.S. to honor the fallen, so we rounded up a few different ways you can honor Memorial Day this coming weekend.

Volunteer at your local cemetery

The U.S. flag is seen outside of the sitting volleyball court at the 2017 DoD Warrior Games. (Photo by Courtney Cooper)

Reaching out to your local cemetery and volunteering to raise and lower flags is a great way to honor the fallen service members, especially if it is a veterans cemetery. Cleaning up grave sites, greeting cemetery visitors and placing fresh flowers on grave sites can go a long way.

Fly your flag

Flying the U.S. flag with proper flag etiquette shows your support. Proper flag etiquette for Memorial Day entails lowering it to the half-staff position from sunrise until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the rest of the day. The half-raised flag position remembers the millions of fallen men and women who lost their lives serving their country.

Attend a Memorial Day service or ceremony

Check your local area to see what services are being held that day.

Attend a concert or parade

The annual National Memorial Day Concert will air Sunday, May 27 at 8 p.m. central time on PBS. The nation’s largest Memorial Day event, the National Memorial Day Parade will take place on Monday, May 28 from 2 p.m. through 4 p.m. Check your area for local concerts and parades.

Participate in the moment of silence

Where ever you are, at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day, pause and be silent for the duration of one minute in act of national unity.

There are many events and ceremonies going on around the U.S. throughout the weekend to honor Memorial Day. Whether you attend a concert, hang your flag, decorate a cemetery or share something on social media, don’t forget the true meaning of Memorial Day.


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