Remember those who gave it all this Memorial Day with ceremonies at multiple VA cemeteries

20 May 2024- Today, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it will host Memorial Day ceremonies at more than 130 national cemeteries across the country to commemorate the lives of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation, as well as all Veterans buried in VA cemeteries. VA’s National Cemetery Administration (NCA) invites Veterans, their families, caregivers, survivors, and the American public to attend these commemorative ceremonies planned throughout Memorial Day weekend. View a complete list of VA Memorial Day events.

During these events, cemeteries typically conduct wreath-laying ceremonies accompanied by commemorative speeches, music, a moment of silence, and the playing of Taps. All VA national cemeteries will be open throughout Memorial Day weekend from dawn to dusk.

“This Memorial Day weekend, we encourage Veterans and all Americans to join us as we remember and honor our nation’s fallen heroes,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “We are forever indebted to the service members who gave their lives in service to our country, and we will never forget their sacrifice.”

On Memorial Day, VA also encourages all Americans to honor the life and legacy of Veterans by leaving a tribute on the Veterans Legacy Memorial. The site contains a memorial page for each of the nearly 10 million Veterans interred in VA National Cemeteries, VA grant-funded cemeteries, Department of Defense-managed cemeteries (including Arlington National Cemetery), U.S. Park Service National Cemeteries, and thousands of private cemeteries where Veterans have received a VA-provided gravesite marker since 1996.

On Memorial Day, VA’s senior leaders will participate in many of these ceremonies, including:

VA Deputy Secretary Tanya Bradsher will speak at Baltimore National Cemetery on May 30th in Baltimore, Maryland. 

This month, VA is also participating in a 20,000-mile nationwide march across the United States with 214,000 volunteers honoring Veterans, survivors, service members and families. The annual partnership between Carry the Load and NCA supports rallies at 32 VA national cemeteries, covering 20,000 miles along five separate routes across 48 states. Sign up to participate here: Memorial May 2024.

Veterans Cemeteries that you can pay respects at locally include at Fort Indiantown Gap in Annville, Prospect Hill Cemetery Soldiers’ Plot in York, Ashland Cemetery’s Soldiers Plot in Carlisle, multiple cemeteries in Eastern Maryland, and the West Virginia National Cemetery in Grafton, WV.