Memorial Day. This U.S. federal holiday is celebrated on the last Monday of May to honor the men and women who have died while serving in the military.

A new survey asked Americans what Memorial Day is actually about.  And even though the answer is RIGHT THERE in the name of the holiday . . . lots of people blew it. Only 55% got it right.

So what's the difference between Memorial Day and Veteran's Day? A story from the Old Farmer's Almanac explains:

On both Memorial Day and Veterans Day, it’s customary to spend time remembering and honoring the countless veterans who have served the United States throughout the country’s history. However, there is a distinction between the two holidays:

  • Memorial Day is a day for remembering and honoring military personnel who died in the service of their country, particularly those who died in battle or as a result of wounds sustained in battle. In other words, the purpose of Memorial Day is to memorialize the veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
  • Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL who served—in wartime or peacetime—regardless of whether they died or survived. Veterans Day is always observed officially on November 11, regardless of the day of the week on which it falls.