Over the years, holidays gradually lose their meaning in the popular imagination. Christmas goes commercial. Easter becomes a celebration of candy. Memorial Day, a day set aside for the remembrance of military personnel who gave their lives for our country, becomes “the unofficial start of summer” and an occasion for cookouts and backyard get-togethers. Make no mistake—grilled burgers are delicious, and outdoor togetherness is more important than ever. But we mustn’t let people lose sight of exactly why we have the freedom to cook, to gather, and to enjoy the summer weather. By modeling some of these forms of remembrance for others, you can help civilians to understand better how to honor fallen soldiers on Memorial Day.
Fly the Flag
If you shielded your flag from the harsh elements this winter, Memorial Day is the time to bring it back into service. Flying the Stars and Stripes with pride from your home or your place of business will remind others to keep military sacrifices in mind as they enjoy their time off on Memorial Day. As you may know, the day of mourning calls for special protocol. Fly the flag at half-staff from sunrise till noon to honor the fallen, and then raise it to the top of the flagpole at high noon to honor the living.
Visit a Military Cemetery
Traditionally, every town in America has held an annual parade to honor fallen soldiers on Memorial Day. Unfortunately, the pandemic has silenced many of the marching bands and cenotaph ceremonies that would usually mark this final Monday of May. In the absence of the usual clatter and clamor of a parade, you can opt instead for quiet contemplation at your nearest military cemetery. You may wish to lay flowers or flags at the graves as well.
Don Your Uniform
Wearing a uniform of the United States Armed Forces is a privilege--one in which civilians cannot partake. If you have this privilege, then you may wish to honor those who cannot be here today and those who came before you by wearing your uniform in public to parades or cemetery visits. Kel-Lac Uniforms provides military uniforms for sale if you have an old uniform that needs replacing or you’re looking for a fresh backup to have on hand.