What’s the difference?

I’ve been preoccupied the last few weeks with planning a Veterans Day event, “Salute to America’s Finest” in Wayzata, MN. 

Last Saturday morning, the program “went off without a hitch,” as my parents used to say.

While subsequently catching up on reading, I saw an article describing the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day. The information isn’t exactly timely at this point, but I’m going to post it on the blog so you and I will know where to find it if a question arises in the future.

Presenting a Quilt of Valor to Vietnam Veteran Robert Erickson Jr.

Presenting a Quilt of Valor and certificate to      Vietnam veteran Robert Erickson Jr.

Veterans Day: Celebrating Service

Originally named “Armistice Day” to celebrate the end of World War I – November 11, 1918, it became a national holiday in 1938. It was changed to “Veterans Day”in 1954 to honor WWII and Korean veterans. Each year a wreath is laid on the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery to show respect for veterans who died in war. Veterans Day is a day to honor all Americans who have worn the nation’s military uniform.

Memorial Day: Remembering Sacrifice

Called “Decoration Day” after the Civil War, it was observed by placing flowers on the graves of those killed in the war. Until 1971 it was officially observed every year on May 30. Since then it has been on the last Monday in May under the National Holiday Act. The flag is to be flown at half-staff until noon, then raised to full-staff. Memorial Day is a day to remember all U.S. military personnel who died in wars or other military actions.

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