The annual Flag Placement Day is being observed differently this year. Traditionally, on the Saturday before Memorial Day, flags are placed at gravesites by hundreds of volunteers at both Northern and Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemeteries. These large public events are led by the National Order of the Trench Rats, Dugout #421 in the South, and by the Nevada Veterans Coalition in the North.
Cemetery staff and the Veterans organizations who plan and execute these major community events have determined that it is not possible to observe the social distancing protocols necessary to protect our veterans, their families, and their supporters from transmission of COVID-19. However, members of the public are still welcome to visit the cemeteries during Memorial Day, or any day.
The State Veterans Memorial Cemeteries remain open and the public may place flags or flowers at burial sites but must observe social distancing protocols to protect themselves and other visitors who come to the cemeteries to remember and honor our fallen. The public is also encouraged to wear face coverings.
“Making this change was not a decision that we, or the lead veterans service organizations made lightly, and no one is more disappointed than the organizers of these events that they cannot cover the cemetery with flags as they have done in the past,” said Nevada Department of Veterans Services Director Kat Miller. “In the end, the safety of our veterans and their families made a modification necessary. Please do know, however, that you are welcome to visit and honor those who have earned our deepest respect as long as you can safely do so.”