Memorial Day

Memorial+Day

J. Shepard

Memorial Day is one of the days in the year that everyone takes a break from their daily lives and enjoys a long weekend. Why is it that this Monday, May 26, we will surround ourselves with friends and cookouts and parades and joy?

Memorial Day has routes dating back to 1866, but it wasn’t recognized by most until after World War I. In 1971 it was declared a national holiday by Congress, and ever since it has served as a day of remembrance and honor.

Nationally, people gather in Washington D.C. to celebrate and remember the brave men and women who served our country. Veterans, service men and women, civilians, and tourists alike, gather at locations like Arlington National Cemetery and other memorials in the Nation’s Capital to celebrate Memorial Day. Also, The National Memorial Day Parade takes place every year in D.C., where marching bands and veterans from all 50 states represent the country.

In Boston, 37,000 flags are planted in front of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Boston Common to commemorate all the Massachusetts soldiers who lost their lives, fighting for our freedom. Other events that are created to remember soldiers also take place throughout Boston all day.

Locally, in West Newbury, there is an annual parade at 10:30am, that features local law enforcement officers, veteran groups, and other nearby organizations. Main Street, lined with American flags, transforms to a place of honor and commemoration.

So this Memorial Day, while you’re enjoying your homes, friends, and community, remember where your freedoms come from and take a moment to appreciate what the soldiers in this country have given us.