May 27th, the last Monday in May, is Memorial Day. Americans pause to remember and honor those who died defending our country. The observance began at Waterloo, NY on May 5, 1865, as a tribute to Union Soldiers.
For years, Southern states had separate Memorial Days. For example, Tennessee's was June 3.
Memorial Day now honors the dead of all wars in which the United States has fought. Congress declared it a Federal Holiday in 1971. Tennessee is nicknamed the Volunteer State because so many of its citizens have enlisted when needed.
Memphians are part of that proud tradition, and Memphis has a special connection to those veterans who gave their lives in the Vietnam War. The names of all of the more than 58,000 American men and women who died in that war were etched in the Vietnam Memorial Wall right here in Memphis.
You can see the architect's sample of the wall, recently donated by Binswanger Glass, at the Pink Palace museum.