What is the difference between Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day? And how are these observances different from Veterans Day? Here’s how these holidays differ, and the unique individuals each is meant to honor.
Memorial Day - The last Monday in May.
Memorial Day was first known as Decoration Day. It is meant to honor those who gave their lives in service.
Armed Forces Day - The third Saturday in May.
Armed Forces Day was created in 1949 by the Secretary of Defense, Louis Johnson. It replaced separate days that honored various branches of the military (Army, Air Force and Navy). It is to honor all who currently serve and all who have served, both active and former, in the reserves, National Guard or on active duty, including the Coast Guard.
Veterans Day - Celebrated annually on November 11th
Veterans Day was originally known as Armistice Day. It is for all living and deceased who have served in the military.