Remembering the True Meaning of Memorial Day

Pams VAS Pams Corner

“It’s not Veterans Day. It’s not military appreciation day. Don’t thank me for my service. Please don’t thank me for my service. It’s take the time to pay homage to the men and women who died while wearing the cloth of this nation you’re so freely enjoying today, day.” –Washington Post


So, what is Memorial Day?

Here’s how it was outlined in General Orders No. 11, Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868:

The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.


Roughly 150 years ago, Memorial day was actually called Decoration Day. This day was a day where the graves of the men who recently died in battle were decorated. It was May, 1868 when May 30th was designated as Memorial Day – a day to remember fallen soldiers. So, this is quite different from Veterans Day.

On this Memorial Day, we honor the sacrifices of prior generations. We honor the sacrifices of the men and women next door who have served or continue to serve our country. And we pledge never to forget the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Let us not forget the true meaning of this day


Take a moment to dwell on the significance of Memorial Day. Let us keep the families of our brave, fallen soldiers in our thoughts and prayers. Instead of thanking our soldiers and veterans for their time spent serving our country, let us relay our condolences for their lost friend and/or family member.

To conclude this post, I would like to share a famous poem by Walt Whitman. Let us reflect..