The march to Memorial Day: VA and Carry the Load team up to honor the fallen


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Memorial Day honors Americans who died while defending the nation and its values. It’s a day that allows us to remember our fallen heroes who put service before self. That is why VA’s National Cemetery Administration is partnering with Carry The Load this year. Together, the goal is to honor Veterans and restore the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Carry The Load, an organization dedicated to remembering the fallen, established three marching routes that thousands of participants will take as they relay toward Dallas, Texas, from April 25 through May 22. The route will cover over 11,000 miles, and will make stops at 26 VA National Cemeteries in 17 states (see information below). In conjunction with the arrival of Carry the Load and its relay teams, each national cemetery along the route will unveil a commemorative “Tribute to the Fallen” plaque honoring Veterans and Gold Star families.


Carry The Load – Tribute to the Fallen plaque ceremony Locations, Dates, Times

Carry the Load relay map

 

National Cemeteries Along Midwest Route

  1. Fort Snelling National Cemetery – Minneapolis, MN – May 2, 2019 @ 5 p.m. CST
  2. Wood National Cemetery – Milwaukee, WI – May 6, 2019 @ 4 p.m. CST
  3. Dayton National Cemetery – Dayton, OH – May 15, 2019 @ 10 a.m. EST
  4. Cave Hill National Cemetery – Louisville, KY – May 16, 2019 @ 1 p.m. EST
  5. Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery – Saint Louis, MO – May 18, 2019 @ 7:30 a.m. CST
  6. Jefferson City National Cemetery – Jefferson City, MO – May 19, 2019 @ 8 a.m. CST
  7. Omaha National Cemetery – Omaha, NE – May 22, 2019 @ 12:00 p.m. CST

National Cemeteries Along East Coast Route

  1. Annapolis National Cemetery – Annapolis, MD – May 4, 2019 @ 4:00 p.m. EST
  2. Arlington National Cemetery – Arlington, VA – May 5, 2019*** (Not a VA cemetery)
  3. Alexandria National Cemetery – Alexandria, VA – May 5, 2019 @ 1:30 p.m. EST
  4. Culpeper National Cemetery – Culpeper, VA – May 6, 2019 @ 9 a.m. EST
  5. Raleigh National Cemetery – Raleigh, NC – May 9, 2019 @ 7:30 a.m. EST
  6. Fort Jackson National Cemetery – Columbia, SC – May 11, 2019 @ 7:30 a.m. EST
  7. Marietta National Cemetery – Marietta, GA – May 15, 2019 @ 8 a.m. EST
  8. Chattanooga National Cemetery – Chattanooga, TN – May 16, 2019 @ 3 p.m. EST
  9. Memphis National Cemetery – Memphis, TN – May 20, 2019 @ 12:30 p.m. CST
  10. Little Rock National Cemetery – Little Rock, AR – May 21, 2019 @ 4 p.m. CST

National Cemeteries Along West Coast Route

  1. Eagle Point National Cemetery – Eagle Point, OR – April 28, 2019 @ 11:30 a.m. PST
  2. Sacramento Valley National Cemetery – Dixon, CA – May 1, 2019 @ 11 a.m. PST
  3. San Francisco National Cemetery – San Francisco, CA – May 2, 2019 @ 8:30 a.m. PST
  4. Golden Gate National Cemetery – San Bruno, CA – May 2, 2019 @ 4:30 p.m. PST
  5. Los Angeles National Cemetery – Los Angeles, CA – May 7, 2019 @ 7:30 a.m. PST
  6. Miramar National Cemetery – San Diego, CA – May 8, 2019 @ 7:30 a.m. PST
  7. Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery – San Diego, CA – May 8, 2019 @ 5:30 p.m. PST
  8. Riverside National Cemetery – Riverside, CA – May 9, 2019 @ 5 p.m. PST
  9. Prescott National Cemetery – Prescott, AZ – May 11, 2019 @ 4 p.m. PST
  10. Fort Bliss National Cemetery – El Paso, TX – May 15, 2019 @ 12:30 p.m. PST

 


VA will share images, videos, and stories from the national relay and NCA dedication ceremonies along the way, and post them here. Each page on this post will serve as a place to document and organize the day’s events.

VA will also dedicate a “Veteran of the Day” feature to the memory of a fallen Veteran who is interred at a national cemetery from April 25 to May 22. These features will be published on our Facebook and Instagram accounts.

You can also see our shared social media content by following these hashtags: #CarryTheLoad, #NoVeteranEverDies, #USMAReeves

Go to the next page for DAY 1 content

Author

Reynaldo Leal

– Reynaldo Leal is a public affairs officer for VA’s office of Digital Media Engagement and member for the VAntage Point’s staff. He is a proud Marine Corps Veteran who deployed to the Al Anbar Province with 3rd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment in 2004 and 2006. He also took part in some of the heaviest fighting during Operation Phantom Fury in 2004.

Comments

  1. Troy Barnes    

    Joint Base San Antonio, Tx wasn’t on the list?

  2. Troy Barnes    

    Joint Base San Antonio, Tx wasn’t on the list?

  3. Gregory Beck    

    Are you all coming thru Texarkana AR-TX?

  4. Columbus L Smith Jr    

    It is obvious from the Comments that the Only Way to truly put “Memorial” back into “Memorial Day” is for the citizens of each area to express their individual Pride and Honor for those that have given so much. I learned the meaning of Memorial Day as a young Boy Scout as we honored those that had Given, with a Flag placed at their Headstone. It was a day of recognition and celebration of Freedom and for the price they paid for us to be Free. It was also My Birthday.
    The Project should be that every National Cemetery be supported by a local Arlington National Cemetery “Chapter” that would plan and encourage local participation and provide the history of those within. The Government can provide for the land, mow the grass and play Taps but the Tears, Mourning and Respect come from the relatives, loved ones and local citizens.
    I survived to Honor Those. Born May 30, 1945, Retired Naval Aviator, Commander. RFTW 2019

  5. Charles bassi    

    Thank you for thinking of our veterans that gave all. Some still live with the results of their service. All need to be remembered and thanked for their contributions to our Country. God bless you for bringing this special day to the forefront for our Nation.

  6. Sonia Marcos    

    Thank you all for raising awareness to the true meaning of Memorial.
    I’m looking forward to the unveiling at Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside May 9th at 5pm
    SMSgt Sonia Marcos

  7. John Leahy    

    How do I register? I am a regular Army soldier who works at the US Strategic Command. I really want to do the 22May cycling segments Papillion and Omaha. Who is my POC for this? I am in a couple of club that I am sure will want to support this event. I also want to circulate the information at Offutt AFB, NE. Please advise.

  8. Barbara Martinez    

    I wish you could stop in Denver,CO or any other town in Colorado. We have 5 bases in Colorado with 3 large national cemeteries.
    You are doing I great job!!

  9. Jayne Smith    

    Will they travel through Washington Crossing National Cemetery? If so, what date. I see it on the footprint map but it isn’t listed. Thank you, Jayne Smith

  10. John Ellwanger    

    Thanks, I’m interested in getting involved, what can i do! Army 68-70 ! Vietnam 69-70!!!

  11. Richard Pouch    

    What a great idea! Put Memorial back in Memorial Day. It is surely needed.

  12. Billy Gribble    

    And Reid Hamlin, as I sure you understabd, it would be impossible to visit all the military cemeteries in the U.S.

  13. Robert York    

    Why is the mountain west ignored. There are a lot of Veterans in Colorado and surrounding states, but it looks like this whole region was ignored.

  14. Norman Goldberg    

    Would have like to know about this before 5/3/19. Can’t walk the route but can ride my motorcycle if allowed except there’s no indication that’s allowed. As a disabled vet I would have liked to honor my friends who have passed.

  15. Michael John Cahalan    

    Hello is the relay going through Michigan, if so when.

    Thank You

    Mike Cahalan

  16. Larry D. Wubbena    

    How do I get info on the walk, want to walk in dallas.

  17. Mrs Diane K. Martineau    

    This is the first I have heard of this! I would have liked to participate to honor my husband and his shipmates aboard the USS Enterprise during fires & explosions on January 14, 1969, plus every single veterans that is serving or has served.

  18. Timothy Shally    

    This is a really great idea. Therefore, knowing it will be a success and thus held for at least one more year, would you please get the word out well in advance in order to give all veterans a chance to get involved. I would love to have a chance to ride (my bike) a section of the route and “Carry The Load” as a tribute to my fellow veterans. Thanks!

  19. Tina Marie Tillert    

    Yes, I whole heartedly agree with these comments. I am an army veteran of 13 years. I have been getting these emails fron the VA the last few years, this is the first time I have ever heard about this. I live in Waco, TX. I work with Veterans every day. How come there is nothing in Texas but El Paso?

  20. Shannon Reser    

    Can anybody join the march as it comes to your area? If so how.

  21. BOURNE    

    Outstanding! I think this is an amazing thing your doing here. Thank you!!!

  22. Paul Klikas    

    Great way to keep those who served on the forefront versus being merely mentioned on Memorial Day.

  23. Richard W Hobbs    

    What about the Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, SD.?

  24. John Paul Inge    

    Would have been nice to know about this sooner. I would have joined you my veteran family! Today is May 2nd; first I ever heard of this event.

    1. Peggy Perales    

      Same here. Came through town and the local VA couldn’t notify us

  25. Tammy Greene    

    Good evening, I’m a 15yr Vet living in Denver Colorado. I’m curious as to why Fort Logan National Cemetery was not included, not even in the mid west route?

  26. Ann Reid Hamlin    

    I was so disappointed when I reviewed the list. I was so hoping that the route would come to Camp Nelson National Cemetery, 6980 Danville Road, Nicholasville, KY 40356. Camp Nelson National Cemetery has over 15,000 graves and is currently burying an average of two veterans a day.

    Ann Hamlin
    https://www.facebook.com/KYCNNC/
    https://www.facebook.com/CentralKentuckyVeteransCommittee/

  27. John J Feehery    

    This is a wonderful event to remind the public and our leaders who ordered these veterans to war of their sacrifice and service.We can never forgett what they have done.So few of us have served and so few know the veteran experience.May God keep each fallen veteran.in his hands and spread his graces on all who have setved.Thank you all who have served and may life be good to you

  28. Deanna Copsey    

    Is there any way we can support this if we are unable to make it for these events. Would love to get a shirt or whatever else to help out.

  29. Jeffrey Huelsbeck    

    I would like to nominate SSG Todd Cornell from Wisconsin as a future “Veteran of the Day” Todd is buried at Wood cemetary in Milwaukee. The NCO Academy at Fort McCoy is also named after Todd. Thank You for your concideration.

    Jeffrey R Huelsbeck 1SG/Retired / Todd’s escort back in 2004

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