Memorial Day – A Day of Remembrance


Monday is Memorial Day in the United States. It's a day to remember those lost in war and military service.

It's also worth remembering those veterans who are alive and need to be served better by our Veterans Administration (VA) health system and society.

In my travels, I've been fortunate to visit three major American military cemeteries in Europe, so I'll share some photos below to reflect on and remember this holiday. I updated this post in 2021 with pictures I took in Normandy in 2019.

The Aisne-Marne American Cemetery (France)

This cemetery honors those who died during World War I, just outside the Champagne region in France. In the nearby Battle of Belleau Wood, American Marines got their famed “devil dog” nickname when fighting the Germans.

Below are some photos I took in late 2012.








Below is a short video I took. There's a lot of wind noise, but you can hear chimes playing the Marine Hymn.

Cambridge American Cemetery (England)

In 2008, while consulting for an NHS hospital, I took a weekend side trip to see the Cambridge American Cemetery and the town of Cambridge itself. Below are some photos I took. The cemetery has special meaning to my father-in-law. His middle name was given in honor of one of his father's airmen who died when they were all shot down during the war, so my mission was to find the burial site and take a picture for him (Vincent Fazio, seen in the last photo).






Normandy American Cemetery (France)

These are photos that I took during a trip to Normandy Beach and other D-Day beaches in 2019, from the Normandy American Cemetery.

Memorial Day Flag Display (Boston)

As a final photo, when my wife and I lived in Boston for a year, there was a massive sea of tiny flags on the Boston Common on Memorial Day 2010. I'm sure this is an annual display – read more and see more pictures online.

Thanks to all of you who have served — especially those who have sacrificed so much.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


  1. As the November 2024 election approaches, never forget:

    Trump: Americans Who Died in War Are ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’

    “In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed.”


    We can’t afford four more years of convicted felon Donald Trump as President.


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