It’s Memorial Day weekend! Here are six things you might not know about this important holiday . . .
1. It’s always observed on the last Monday of May . . . which is May 30th this year.
2. It was called Decoration Day from 1868 to 1970. It didn’t become “Memorial Day” until 1971. That’s also when we began observing it on the last Monday of May.
3. The Department of Veterans Affairs says that Memorial Day is celebrated in late May because it’s when flowers are likely to be blooming across the country.
4. There’s an exact moment of remembrance on Memorial Day. At 3:00 P.M. local time, we’re supposed to pause and remember the brave men and women who died in service to our nation.
5. The Ironton-Lawrence Memorial Day Parade in Ironton, Ohio, is the oldest continuously-running Memorial Day parade in the nation, beginning back in 1868. The parade WAS held in 2020 during the height of COVID, but it took place with no spectators and it lasted 17 minutes when it usually lasts a couple hours.
6. The bugle call “Taps“ is typically performed at military funerals as well as the annual Memorial Day wreath ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. And it was adapted from a separate Civil War bugle call known as “Scott Tattoo”, which was used to signal lights out.