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5 Ways to Honor the Fallen

Memorial Day is a time for backyard barbecues, trips to the lake, or the release of some of the summer's hottest movies--at least that is what it has become to many. There is nothing wrong with enjoying time with friends and family, but we

should remember that Memorial Day is a time to honor our fallen soldiers. USO.org has provided a few simple ways to honor the fallen this Memorial Day.

1. Take a walk through a local veterans cemetery.

If you don't have a local veterans cemetery, take a walk through one of the larger cemeteries in your area and look for the American flags or military insignia on headstones and markers.

2. Brush up on your Memorial Day knowledge

This article, also from USO.org explains the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Both are important days of honoring and remembrance, but each has a distinct purpose. 

3. Participate in a Memorial Day walk or run

With this option, you get the best of both worlds. You can enjoy the warm sunshine and pay homage to the those that made the ultimate sacrifice in the defense of our country.

4. Investigate your family's military history

The best way to do this is to spend time talking with a senior family member about his or her service or their knowledge of relatives who served. If this is not an option for you, consider searching the National Personnel Record Center, a part of the National Archives, which has military records beginning in World War I.

5. Virtually visit a war memorial in Washington, D.C.

Our nation's capitol is filled with monuments to the fallen. From the African American Civil War monument to the World War II monument to the Vietnam Memorial, you can experience them virtually through these USO.org videos.

No matter your plans for Memorial Day weekend, carve out some time to honor those who died defending freedom. Choose one of these option or be creative and plan your own tribute.