Harford County Gears Up For Memorial Day Tributes: A Variety Of Events To Honor And Remember The Armed Forces


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HARFORD COUNTY - Harford County and the broader Mid-Atlantic region have several Memorial Day events lined up to pay tribute to our armed forces.

Initially known as Decoration Day, Memorial Day was first introduced in 1868 by Gen. John A. Logan to commemorate Northern lives lost in the Civil War. The tradition evolved over time, and by 1971, Memorial Day became a federal holiday.

Waterloo, New York, is recognized as the birthplace of Memorial Day, with the first observance occurring on May 5, 1866. During this day, businesses closed, and residents adorned the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers and flags.

Previously, the holiday only honored Union soldiers who died in the Civil War. However, after the casualties of World War I, the observance expanded to remember all military personnel who lost their lives in service.

Each year, a national moment of silence is observed at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day. Americans nationwide are invited to cease activity for one minute to remember military personnel who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

Here are some events to help you commemorate the holiday weekend:

Salute of Flags: From May 25 to May 31 at Aberdeen Festival Park, located at 60 N. Parke Street, a magnificent display of flags, will grace the park. This display will honor those who have served or are presently serving in the military, along with flags recognizing first responders.

38th Bel Air American Legion Memorial Day Event: Participate in this annual ritual at Shamrock Park (39 North Hickory Avenue) at 11 a.m. on Monday to pay respects to the war heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice. Before the ceremony, the Bel Air Community Band, led by Richard Hauf, will present a concert of patriotic music starting at 10:30 a.m.

Observance at Arlington National Cemetery: The Memorial Day commemoration at Arlington National Cemetery will occur at the Amphitheater on Monday. All special events and ceremonies are open to the public free of charge. For further information, refer to the Arlington National Cemetery website.

National Memorial Day Concert The National Memorial Day Concert will be aired on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET and will be available for live streaming on PBS.

National Memorial Day Parade The American Veterans Center will be hosting the National Memorial Day Parade on Constitution Avenue in Washington, D.C., on Monday, starting at 2 p.m. Following the live telecast of the parade, the program "Our Sacred Honor: An American Salute" will be aired on major networks across the country.

National Museum of the United States Army From Friday through Monday, the National Museum of the United States Army in Fort Belvoir, Virginia, will host many Memorial Day events, all included in the general admission. These will feature a flag exhibition, a poppy flower craft activity, and interactive history exhibits. Monday's schedule also includes a screening of the documentary "Dear Sirs: A Personal Journey Through World War II 75 Years Later" and a Memorial Day Moment of Silence. Further details can be found here.

"Rolling To Remember" March In Washington, D.C., a series of events, including a motorcycle demonstration ride by thousands from RFK to the National Mall on Sunday, will be held over the Memorial Day weekend to honor the nation's prisoners of war and those missing-in-action. Organized by AMVETS, the "Rolling To Remember" rally is a call to action to prevent veteran suicides. You can view the 2023 event on Facebook.

Annual Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund Observance On Monday, the Annual Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund Observance will be held at The Wall at 5 Henry Bacon Dr. NW, Washington, D.C. From 9:45-10:15 a.m., a wreath-laying ceremony will occur. At noon, an observance will commence on the East Knoll, which will be live-streamed on the organization's Facebook page and at vvmf.org/live.

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