Wreath Laying Ceremonies to Precede National Memorial Day Parade

Washington, D.C. -- The United States Navy Memorial will host two Memorial Day events prior to the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C.

Rolling Thunder will be at the Navy Memorial on Saturday, May 26th to host an annual wreath laying ceremony in conjunction with the Rolling Thunder Run. Each year, members of Rolling Thunder gather on Memorial Plaza with members of the Navy Memorial to recognize American veterans and honor service members classified as POWs or MIA.

The Navy Memorial’s President and CEO Rear Admiral Frank Thorp IV, USN (Ret.), will provide remarks for the ceremony.

On Monday, May 28th, the Navy Memorial will hold a Memorial Day Wreath Laying Ceremony in partnership with the Fleet Reserve Association, Naval District Washington, and Spirit of ’45 on Memorial Plaza. The ceremony will take place at 1:00pm, directly before the National Memorial Day Parade.

"Memorial Day is the day we honor our heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country," said Rear Admiral Frank Thorp. "And the Navy Memorial, alongside the Lone Sailor, is the perfect location to recognize their incredible service.”

Rear Admiral Frank Thorp will provide opening remarks for the ceremony. He will be followed by Rear Admiral “Chip” Rock from Naval District Washington, Force Master Chief Tom Snee, USN (Ret.), National Executive Director of the Fleet Reserve Association, and a representative of Spirit of ’45, who will speak to the importance of preserving history for future generations.

Additionally, the wreath laying ceremony will feature the U.S. Navy Band and Ceremonial Guard, and “Taps” will be played in honor of service members who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Attendees will be invited to place a flower on a ceremonial wreath in memory of a service member lost. When the event has concluded, the wreath will stay on Memorial Plaza so the public can view and add to it.

Memorial Plaza is a popular venue for Navy events, including retirement, promotion, and commemorative wreath laying ceremonies. Located directly across from the National Archives, the plaza is made up of a large granite map of the world and is surrounded by 22 bronze reliefs that pay tribute to various components of the U.S. Navy. It is also home to the original Lone Sailor statue, an iconic symbol that represents the men and women who have served, are serving, or will serve in the U.S. Navy.

Memorial Plaza is adjacent to the Navy Memorial Visitor Center at 701 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early, giving them an opportunity to take advantage of the Navy Memorial’s free exhibits that celebrate the rich naval heritage of the United States.

To learn more about the Memorial Day weekend at the Navy Memorial, visit http://www.navymemorial.org or contact Robert Parker at rparker@navymemorial.org.

About the United States Navy Memorial
The Navy Memorial, located at 701 Pennsylvania Ave, NW, consists of a large plaza with a granite map of the world, the iconic Lone Sailor statue, 3,500 square-foot museum area, a 240-person theater, the Ship’s Store which sells Navy memorabilia and the Navy Log, the nation’s largest publicly available data base of sea service veterans. Our mission is to Honor, Recognize and Celebrate the men and women of the Sea Services, past, present and future; and to inform the public about their service. We do that mission with the support of tens of thousands of members and Corporate Partners including USAA, Veritas, CACI, Lockheed Martin, U.S. Money Reserve, DXC Technology, Huntington Ingalls Industry, NewDay USA, Ernst & Young, General Dynamics, Navy Mutual Aid, Pratt & Whitney and Capital Bank. To learn more, please visit navymemorial.org

Megan Thomas