In Honor and Respect
By Debra Straight , 15th Airlift Wing inspector general's office
/ Published May 19, 2009
HICKAM AIR FORCE BASE, Hawaii -- Memorial Day's tradition to decorate the graves of the fallen began when women in the South decorated the graves of confederate soldiers who gave their lives during the Civil War. This day became official May 5, 1868, by proclamation of General John Logan, who was national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic. After WW I, the holiday changed to recognize all who died fighting in a war, not just those from the Civil War. Memorial Day, the last Monday in May, was established nationwide as a day of remembrance by the National Holiday Act of 1971. In 2000, a National Moment of Remembrance was established to remind us about the true spirit of Memorial Day. All are encouraged to observe a "moment of silence" at 3 p.m. local time in honor, remembrance and respect for our fallen war veterans.