Memorial Day has been observed since May 30, 1868 as members of the Grand Army of the Republic (Northern Veterans of the Civil War) gathered to commerate those who lost their lives during our nation’s Civil War. This observance grew in time, with individual states establishing a Memorial Day as a legal Holiday, and was established as a Federal Holiday in 1971 by Congress.

In Newport, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 406 leads 3 distinct events open to the public to honor men and women from Newport who gave their lives in service to our country, and to remember all who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Grave Flagging – Saturday, May 18th 9:00 AM

On Saturday May 18th, all are welcome to help VFW Post 406 and the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Camp 1 (Newport) decorate the graves of over 1200 veterans buried in the public and private cemeteries located in the north end of the city.

Volunteers are asked to meet at the Belmont Chapel within Island Cemetery at 9:00 AM to receive flags and instructions so that the Veterans buried in Island Cemetery, the Common Burial Ground, Friends Burial Ground, St. Mary’s Cemetery, the North Burial Ground, and the Brahman Cemetery can be properly honored and remembered.

This is a family-friendly event open to all. Please wear sturdy shoes suitable for walking over uneven ground. Flagging will take approximately two hours, and is rain or shine. The street address for Island Cemetery is 30 Warner St, Newport, RI 02840

Strewing of Flowers – Monday, May 27th, 10:00 AM

The Strewing of Flowers is a traditional maritime ceremony to remember and honor those lost at sea in service to our Nation. While the sacrifices of the Navy and Coast Guard most readily come to mind, all branches of the military, including the Merchant Marines, have suffered casualties while in defense of our nation.

Veterans, active military, the public, and their families are invited to join VFW Post 406 at Storer Park on Memorial Day, Monday, May 27th at 10:00 AM to reflect on the peril experienced by those serving at sea, and those lost due to conflict and accident. As part of the ceremony, attendees will be asked to participate by casting flowers into Newport Harbor to honor those who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

We encourage families to attend, as this is a great way to help children learn to appreciate the sacrifices made to create and sustain freedom within our country

Storer Park is located at the intersection of Washington St & Gladys Carr Bolhouse Road in Newport, RI.

Memorial Day Ceremony – Monday, May 27th, 12:00

VFW Post 406 & American Legion Post 7 invite the public to attend a Memorial Day Ceremony at Newport City Hall to honor and reflect on the sacrifices of local Newport men and women who have served our Nation. Newport has served a role in all of our Nation’s wars, from the American Revolution through the Global War on Terror.

We gather at City Hall as monuments remembering those who lost their lives during World War I, World War II, Korea, and Vietnam are clustered on the lawn.