Even after 145 years, Memorial Day continues to be one of America’s most cherished patriotic observances. It was in 1968 that Congress began the practice of combining workplace practicality with tradition, passing the uniform Monday Holiday Act, officially moving Memorial Day to the last Monday in May in order to create three Day weekends for federal workers. The law, simultaneously, declared Memorial Day a federal holiday, and took effect in 1971.
Thus began a more modern practice of remembrance, with grief, mourning and strewing of flowers morphing in to more festive activities of parades and barbecues over three day weekends, ushering in summer.
Although Memorial Day weekend seems to be all about parades, barbecues, and enjoying a long weekend with family, it’s important to keep in mind the reason for this celebration. Memorial Day is a time to honor the men and women who have protected the freedom of the nation.
Over the last decade, as more soldiers have given their time, their skills, and their lives overseas, the spirit and meaning of Memorial Day have taken on greater significance.
Red Poppies are recognized as the Memorial Day flower.
On the first observation of Memorial Day, flowers were placed on the graves of all Civil War dead — both Union and Confederate — in Arlington National Cemetery. Placing flowers or flags on soldiers’ graves has been a Memorial Day tradition ever since.
Celebrate the spirit of this day by sending graceful and harmonious floral ensembles to the families of those who defended the honor and freedom of the nation with their lives.
This Memorial Day, pay tribute to your fellow Americans and celebrate the war heroes.
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