McAlester News-Capital

McAlester News-Capital

Take time on Monday to remember those who died while serving our nation.

We have recognized Memorial Day since May 5, 1868 — or just three years after the end of the Civil War — according to the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

On that day, the leader of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), which was a Union veterans organization, established Decoration Day for the nation to honor those who died in war with flowers decorating their graves.

Maj. Gen. John A. Logan declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30 before the first large observance was held in 1868 at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C. Decoration Day was expanded after World War I to honor those who died in all American wars.

Memorial Day was declared a national holiday in 1971 and was scheduled to occur on the last Monday in May.

"The National Moment of Remembrance Act" was passed by US Congress and the president in December 2000 to create the White House Commission on the National Moment of Remembrance. It encourages Americans to take a minute of silence at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day to honor those who have died in service to the nation.

Our community is proud of its military history and is home to several veterans. Although our world has changed during the pandemic, make sure to take a minute at 3 p.m. Monday to remember those who died for us.

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