Memorial Day was established originally in 1867 as Decoration Day in remembrance of those who gave their lives during the US Civil War.
In Long Beach, the GAR -- Great Army of the Republic -- veterans of the Civil War celebrated this day.
Because the South refused to honor the celebration it was changed to honor all Americans who died in battle. (Several states still do not recognize the day.)
The wearing of red poppies for Memorial Day was made popular during WWI by a woman named Moina Michael who after reading the poem "In Flanders Field" by John McCrae, made it a national campaign to wear a silk poppy in honor of the American soldiers who gave up their lives.
The National Holiday Act of 1971, moved Memorial Day from May 30 to the last Monday in May.
This coming Monday, take a moment to remember the men and women who gave their lives in service of our county.
Locally, you can visit Rosie the Riveter Park located at Clark Avenue at Conant Street and read the memorial banners of the 15 Long Beach men who gave their lives in the service of our country in Iraq and Afghanistan. Use your cellphone to listen to a narration of their lives. Take a moment and reflect on their sacrifice.
Enjoy your holiday.