Memorial Day is an important holiday set aside to honor the sacrifices of the men and women who have died while serving in our nation’s armed forces.
It began in the days following the Civil War, when there was a push to designate a day to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers on both sides of the conflict. Decoration Day was designated for that purpose in 1868. The term “Memorial Day” began to be widely used in the 1880s, but it wasn’t until 1968 that Memorial Day was officially established as the last Monday in May, honoring troops from all of our nation’s wars.
Memorial Day is especially important to Mountain View Memorial Park. Established in 1915, this is the final resting place of thousands of veterans, many of whom gave their lives in service of our country. There are five burial sections set aside for veterans, and those who have been honorably discharged are provided with complimentary burial spaces.
Monuments at Mountain View reflect all branches of the military, and there is a Veterans Memorial on the grounds. In addition to a Garden of Honor, this space holds monuments to Army General John Shalikashvili, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Supreme Allied Commander from 1993-1997, and Army Sergeant Llewellyn Chilson, the second-highest decorated enlisted soldier in World War II.
Veterans are held in high regard at Mountain View and are entitled to special honors at their funerals, including honor guard members, a flag-draped casket, and a rifle volley. One of the most memorable moments in a veteran’s funeral is the folding of the flag before it’s presented to the family. The meaningful and solemn ceremony in which the flag is carefully folded 13 times is a final honor for a veteran’s life. When the flag is folded on Memorial Day, it is especially reminiscent of this beautiful gesture.
Mountain View Memorial Park and the Pierce County Veterans’ Advisory Council invite all members of the public to the official 2018 Joint Services Memorial Day Ceremony on Monday, May 28 at 2pm in the Garden of Honor.
For those who would like to use the opportunity to decorate a veteran’s grave, flowers will be available for purchase on Monday. Free hot dogs will also be provided. For more information about Memorial Day or to learn more about the services available at Mountain View, call 253.948.9895 or visit our website .