May 30th – A Day to Remember

May 31, 2011 | 2 comments

Charlie – May 2011

     For the first thirty-five years of my life, Memorial Day was celebrated on May 30th no matter what day of the week it fell on.  I don’t know if we got the day off from school when I was a child or not, but by the time my son was born on May 30, 1956 it must have been a full-blown holiday because I remember thinking, “Well, we’ll always be able to have a big birthday celebration for Charlie since he was born on a holiday!’
     Little did I know, of course, that in 1971 the Uniform Holidays Bill would go into effect and move Memorial Day from its traditional date to the last Monday in May.  The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) have been trying to change it back ever since.  A few years ago a VFW spokesman said:
     “Changing the date merely to create three-day weekends has undermined the very meaning of the day.  No doubt, this has contributed a lot to the general public’s nonchalant observance of Memorial Day.”
     Well, I don’t know about all that.  I just know that Charlie’s birthday doesn’t often fall on a holiday now.  In fact, since 1971 only six May 30ths have been Mondays giving Charlie the last day of a three-day weekend for his celebration.  As I see it, he’d have had forty holidays for birthday celebrations had  things been left the way they were.
     I think I’m voting with the VFW, even though it’s for the wrong reasons!


  1. Nancy

    I think I will vote with the VFW also. It could be age, but, I am more and more liking observances as they were recognized, appreciated and honored with the focus being just that, the way of the holiday, not 3 day weekends or great and grand department store sales. P.S. Charlie looks great!

  2. Stephanie Frieze

    A handsome child you have, Sydney! When I was a child Memorial Day was always on the 30th and we got it off regardless of the day of the week. I wouldn’t mind having both Lincoln and Washington’s birthdays off, too, although I admit to enjoying our midWinter break around Presidents’ Day. It makes MY birthday a holiday of sorts. Since we don’t get Columbus Day off can we make a Leif Erickson Day in March. March has little to recommend it for holidays other than St. Patrick’s Day and getting THAT off isn’t going to happen.


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