People often get Memorial Day and Veteran's Day confused. Memorial Day is to give thanks to those who died for our freedom.
With that in mind, giving thanks to both families of fallen soldiers, and also assisting the living veterans is an important American duty.
We nabbed a few things you could do to honor the dead, and the living, on this somber holiday.
- Send a letter, grant a wish, or fund a scholar at AMillionThanks.org, a site that helps you give back to service men and women, and veterans.
- Visit cemeteries, especially special "fallen soldier" memorials and plant flags or bring flowers to mark the graves.
- Study the Facts:
Knowing how many have served and have been lost is a sobering but important fact. Here's some stats below from ABC News:American Revolution (1775-1783)
Battle Deaths: 4,435
War of 1812 (1812-1815)
Battle Deaths: 2,260
Indian Wars (approx. 1817-1898)
Battle Deaths (VA estimate): 1,000
Mexican War (1846-1848)
Battle Deaths: 1,733
Other Deaths (In Theater): 11,550
Civil War (1861-1865)
Battle Deaths (Union): 140,414
Other Deaths (In Theater)(Union): 224,097
Battle Deaths (Confederate): 74,524
Other Deaths (In Theater)(Confederate): 59,297
Spanish-American War (1898-1902)
Battle Deaths: 385
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 2,061
World War I (1917-1918)
Battle Deaths: 53,402
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 63,114
World War II (1941 –1945)
Battle Deaths: 291,557
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 113,842
Korean War (1950-1953)
Battle Deaths: 33,739
Other Deaths (In Theater): 2,835
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 17,672
Vietnam War (1964-1975)
Battle Deaths: 47,434
Other Deaths (In Theater): 10,786
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 32,000
(These cover period 11/1/55 to 5/15/75)
Desert Shield/Desert Storm (1990-1991)
Battle Deaths: 148
Other Deaths (In Theater): 235
Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater): 1,565
Global War on Terror, including Iraq and Afghanistan (Oct 2001 - present)
Total Deaths: 6,888.
In addition to those, the State Department Office of the Historian lists the Philippine-American War, 1899 to 1902, citing the deaths of more than 4,200 U.S. combatants.
- Take a moment to think about those who've passed on, and their families.