Memorial Day is so much more than a 3-day weekend opportunity to get your first yearly sunburn or test your limits on how many 6-packs you can throw down with your friends.  In fact, all too often, HOLIDAYS become a distraction to the greater meaning and purpose behind why our country stops to recognize the moment.  Whether it’s Christmas getting lost in the hustle and bustle of presents and parties or Memorial Day becoming an excuse to party, let’s take a moment today to celebrate the real reason for the seasonal holiday with a 6-pack of facts.


  1. Was memorial day a heartfelt response to the overwhelming carnage of lives lost in the Civil War?  Some of 620,000 soldiers on both sides gave their lives for the cause of their country and beliefs.
  2. General Logan made it an official holiday on May 5, 1868, which set aside the day for the sole purpose of decorating the graves of fallen soldiers who fought in defense of their country.  Its original name was “Decoration Day” for the effort of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths, and flags.  Federal Law officially declared it “Memorial Day” in 1967.
  3. Memorial Day for many is a solemn event. However, those who see it as a celebration of a life well served, find many ways to honor their fallen soldiers.  From motorcycle rallies to firework celebrations, no doubt, the day has evolved into a modern celebration of the life and liberty that fallen soldiers have provided for us all.
  4. In 2000, Congress established a “National Moment of Remembrance” which asks all Americans to take a moment of pause at 3 pm to unify, in heart, as a country around the memory of the fallen soldiers that paid the ultimate price for their country.
  5.  Not to be confused with Veterans day, which celebrates the service of all veterans, Memorial Day is a recognition of the soldiers who died in combat.
  6. Waterloo, NY is recognized as the official birthplace of Memorial Day, and in 1968, Congress voted to observe Memorial Day on a Monday, making it a 3-day weekend.

In case you didn’t know… now you know.  Let’s have a fun, safe weekend and take the time to REMEMBER.

About the Author Staci Wallace

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