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Clarifying Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day

May 14, 2018, 16:24 PM
2018 WSRA Blog Post AF Day and Memorial Day

With Memorial Day quickly approaching, those of us at the airport feel passionately about ensuring that we appropriately honor that day, along with the upcoming Armed Forces Day holiday. 

Across America, you may find mixed messages about these days; however, they are not interchangeable and Memorial Day, specifically, isn’t exactly a holiday that we joyfully celebrate. Rather, Memorial Day is a day of quiet remembrance to honor those who paid the ultimate price for our country’s freedom. 

Around the world and here in the Fort Leonard Wood Region, Americans will gather at Veterans cemeteries and local cemeteries to pay their respects to American service members from current and previous generations. Typically, Veterans cemeteries will place American flags at the graves of these fallen warriors, as well. In fact, each year on the Thursday before the Memorial Day weekend, Arlington National Cemetery hosts a “Flags In” event that is incredibly important and often times sets the tone for what can be a very emotional weekend.

Though many businesses around the country will use the long holiday to promote special deals and big sales, our Waynesville-St. Robert Regional Airport team will quietly carry on serving our passengers and remember those service members who are no longer with us. 

Armed Forces Day, first celebrated in 1950, is celebrated on the weekend prior to Memorial Day and serves as a way for our nation to thank those currently serving, whether they be active duty, National Guard, or Reserves. So, if you’re looking for a great time to say thanks to the special person in your life who wakes up and willingly puts on the uniform, this is the day!

May is military appreciation month, so in addition to celebrating those who are currently serving, you’ll likely find many businesses and organizations who extend a special thanks throughout the month to those currently wearing the uniform.

We feel strongly about each of these special days and encourage you to recognize both of them in a way that will honor our nation’s military. If you have special plans for either day, drop them in the comments below – we’d love to hear about them!

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