How to Observe Memorial Day in a Respectful Way

American flags against the sky

There’s not really a bad time to thank a veteran or an active duty service member, but there is a catch on Memorial Day.* The “Memorial” in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom and liberty. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember those Americans including our ancestors, family members, loved ones neighbors and friends who have paid the price for the blessings of liberty. You can change this by doing the following:

  • By wearing your Memorial Day Button from the first of May until Memorial Day.
  • By visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.
  • By flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon. Memorial Day is a day of “National Mourning.”
  • By attending religious services of your choice.
  • By visiting memorials.
  • By participating in a “National Moment of Remembrance” at 3:00 PM local time, to pause and think upon the meaning of the day and for taps to be played where possible.
  • By renewing a pledge to aid the widows, and orphans of our fallen dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

*Thanking those who served is always appreciated. Nearly every single veteran signed on the dotted line to contribute to something bigger than themselves and when civilians extend their gratitude, the good will is reciprocated – that is, on any day outside of the last Monday in May. Yes, the gratitude is always welcomed but Memorial Day isn’t the time. If prompted, nearly every veteran will give a polite response along the lines of, “thank you for your sentiment, but today is not my day.”

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