Pallets Play a Role in Memorial Day Watchfire

Memorial Day occurs in just five days on Monday, May 30th. We were surprised to learn about the involvement of...

memorial day watchfire made from old pallets

Memorial Day occurs in just five days on Monday, May 30th. We were surprised to learn about the involvement of pallets in a special holiday tradition occurring this weekend.

This Sunday, May 29th, as in past years since 1987, the Vietnam Veterans of America Central New York Chapter 103 are using old wooden pallets, boards, logs, and other scrap wood to build a Memorial Day Watchfire in the Veterans Memorial Watchfire Park at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse.

What is a “watchfire” exactly? The watchfire stems from a long military tradition that, following a long battle or march, a large fire would be started so those missing or lost could locate and rejoin their comrades.

The annual watchfire in Syracuse offers a time for all to reflect on the service and sacrifice of veterans. It also provides veterans, in particular, a chance to get together and reminisce about serving our country. Additionally, the large bonfire is a way for the community to respectfully retire thousands of old American flags that are no longer fit to fly due to wear and tear. Unserviceable flags are brought to the watchfire and burned as prescribed by federal law.

two gentlemen carrying a huge wooden pallet

The watchfire event is free and open to veterans and non-veterans alike. If you’re in the Syracuse area and haven’t attended before, now is your chance!

Rose Pallet would like to publicly salute our Nation’s Veterans.  Thank you servicemen and women and your families for all you have sacrificed to protect this great nation, our traditions, and values.

Have you ever served in the military or perhaps are still active in reserves?  If so, comment below to let us know which branch so we can send you a special “thank you.”

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