May 29 is Memorial Day, a federal holiday remembering the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. Here are five facts you may not know about the federal holiday:
It’s observed every year on the last Monday of May
It was originally called Decoration Day
To honor the deceased, soldiers would decorate graves of their fallen comrades with flowers, flags and wreaths. Hence Decoration Day. Although Memorial Day became its official title in the 1880s, the holiday wouldn’t legally become Memorial Day until 1967.
A National Moment of Remembrance is legally required
In 2000, a law was passed requiring Americans to stop and honor the fallen 3 p.m. local time each Memorial Day.
Nearly 50 million people will travel at least 50 miles each Memorial Day
The flag is supposed to be flown at half-mast until noon, then at full mast until sunset on Memorial Day.