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To many Americans, Memorial Day has lost its meaning

Hats from each branch of the military were displayed at the fallen comrade table.

Three years after the end of the Civil War, Maj. "We do more than a graveside service", Caldwell explained.

According to historical accounts, in an expression of gratitude to those who died fighting against slavery, the freed slaves exhumed the bodies of more than 250 Union soldiers from a mass grave at a Confederate prison camp in Charleston, South Carolina, and gave them a proper burial. James E. Wright explains the terms "monument" and "memorial" are sometimes used interchangeably to describe the many locations across the United States which honor the fallen.

There is a lot of debate about the origin of America's Memorial Day, with one popular story crediting the holiday's roots to SC.

Dunbar pointed out notable veterans buried in Rose Hill, including the American Legion Post 18′s namesake Burton Woolery, who was the first casualty from Monroe County during World War I.

"This tradition has gone on for decades, longer than you and me put together", said Dennison. After World War I, it was extended to include all men and women who died in any war or military action.

Veterans groups, concerned that more Americans associate the holiday with the start of summer and not its intended objective, have long lobbied for a return to the May 30 observances.

Modesitt gave a nod to the morning's proceedings, which included music by the Parsons Community Band and a roll call to honor those who died in military service, and ended his speech with a challenge to those present.

"We have men and women in the war on terror who serve today and who are in harm's way, so keep them in your prayers today and everyday", said Sen. For combat veterans and Gold Star families especially, "it hurts that, as a society, we don't truly understand and appreciate what the true meaning of Memorial Day is".

So save the thanks for Veterans Day, if you must.

Along the traditional route, we will [pay] our respects to those Veterans who have been laid to rest at the Rural Cemetery, Burnett Cemetery and Revolutionary War Cemetery. I can remember the history of my country as well as the history of my family when we would visit Town of Maine Cemetery, and work on graves from the Civil War era, and markers so worn that you had to run your hands over them to determine the names and the dates.

"Memorial Day is about the deceased veterans", he added.

The ceremony's audio was broadcast through the facility's speakers, delivering Ellis' message to residents who were physically unable to attend the ceremony.

Established at the national level on May 5, 1868 by U.S. Army major general John A. Logan, this holiday was originally referred to as "Decoration Day" in reference to the flowers used to decorate the graves of those who died during the War Between the States.


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