Memorial Day in the United States occurs on the final Monday in May, creating a “three-day weekend.” Originally designed to commemorate the Americans who died during the United States Civil War of 1861-1865, the holiday now honors every American who has died in the nation’s wars.
As can be expected given the serious theme of the day, on Memorial Day parades and memorial services, often at military cemeteries, commemorate those who have fought and died to guarantee the freedoms Americans hold dear. The day takes on special significance during those times when the United States finds itself actually at war.
On another level, however, the three-day Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of the summer season, just as the equivalent Labor Day weekend several months later marks its end. The famous “Indianapolis 500” automobile race occurs every year over the Memorial Day weekend.
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