Memorial Day is almost here, great picnics, great food, great friends, right? And one of the longest standing traditions is the running of the Indianapolis 500, which has been held in conjunction with Memorial Day since 1911.
But do you know the real meaning of this day? Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day and was to honor our service members who died fighting for our country. Decoration Day was designated to be on May 30, but some time ago, our government in all its wisdom, decided to make it the last Monday of May so that federal employees would have a 3 day weekend.
Many people observe this holiday by visiting cemeteries and memorials. A National moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 PM local time. Another tradition is to fly the American flag at half-staff from dawn until noon local time. Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars take donations for poppies in the days leading up to Memorial Day, the poppy became the symbol of Memorial Day as the result of the poem "In Flanders Fields".
Over time, I think the true meaning of this day has been lost. So while you are enjoying your picnics, food and friends, take a minute to remember the real reason for this holiday, and say a prayer of thanks for the people who died so that we can enjoy all of these things.