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Memorial Day: 10 Quick Facts, History, and Observances

“All gave some; some gave all”.

1. Observance of Memorial Day began after the Civil War, in remembrance of those 620,000 who lost their lives in the deadliest war ever to occur on U.S. soil.

2. Out of the total number of deaths in the Civil War, a majority of the deaths, 400,000, resulted from disease. Combat resulted in 220,000 deaths.

3. Memorial Day’s focus was to honor those who died in the wars — different from Veteran’s Day, which honors all veterans, living or dead.

4. Memorial Day was initially called “Decoration Day.” Memorial Day was proclaimed May 5, of 1868 by General Logan in his 11th General Order. It was observed by placing flowers on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.

5. It was later re-named “Memorial Day” in 1882, which was officially declared its new name under Federal law in 1967.

6. On June 28, 1968, the United States Congress passed the Uniform Holidays Bill, which included moving Memorial Day to the last Monday in May to enable it to be observed as part of a three-day weekend. It took effect in 1971.

7. Flag Etiquette for Memorial Day is to fly it at half-staff until noon. At 12:00 p.m., it should be lowered only to hoist it to the top; and taken down at sunset. If the flag is lighted, it may remain up. It should not be flown in the rain.

8. The tradition of wearing red poppies on Memorial Day in honor of those who died was inspired by a poem written in 1915 “In Flander’s Fields,” by John McCrae.

9. The sheet music “Kneel While Our Loves are Sleeping” published in 1867, by Nella L. Sweet, and words by G.W.R. were dedicated “To The Ladies of the South,” who decorated the graves of the fallen soldiers.

10. In December of 2000, “The National Moment of Remembrance Act” was signed into law. It encourages Americans, to pause for a moment of silence on Memorial Day at 3 p.m. local time, no matter where they may be, to remember all of those who have died in service to the United States of America.

DUI Safety Message from Law Office of James Novak Criminal Defense Firm Tempe, AZ

Memorial Day is often observed with celebrations and gatherings among friends and family. For many it marks the beginning of the summer and its holidays. Many plans include traveling, enjoying outdoor activities such as boating, outdoor grilling, swimming, and tubing down the Salt River. Whatever your plans be sure you know laws of highways; roadways; on the water; or wherever, you will be celebrating. Below are some DUI tips to help you stay safe.

DUI Prevention and Alcohol Safety Tips

• Drive defensively. Be aware that there is the potential for other motorists on the road that may be driving impaired due to alcohol or drugs.

• Plan ahead. If you plan to drink, don’t drive. If there’s a chance you might be driving impaired or under the influence of alcohol or drugs, make arrangements in advance for a ride home. Appoint a designated driver, take a cab, or contact a trusted family member or friend who will not be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

• Don’t engage in “Binge Drinking”. This is the number one cause of alcohol poisoning, and can be fatal. The National Center for Disease Control (CDC) defines “Binge Drinking” as drinking 4 or 5 shots of liquor in a row.

• If you live or drive in Arizona be aware that Arizona has some of the toughest laws in the country related to DUI.

• Know that a person weighing 120 pounds or more can easily reach or exceed the legal limit for Blood Alcohol Content after only 1-2 drinks. A person 160 pounds or over can reach or exceed the legal limit after 2-3 alcoholic beverages. Both depend on certain factors such as gender, food, medications, alcohol tolerance, and more.

• A person can be driving “impaired to the slightest” degree even after only one drink, depending on other factors and be in violation of Arizona Law A.R.S, 28-2831.

• A person can be guilty of driving “impaired to the slightest degree” if they have are under the influence of intoxicating drugs, even if they have had no spirituous liquor at all under A.R.S. 28-1381.

DUI Arrest and Consequences

Officials and law enforcement agencies work closely to enforce Arizona DUI laws, throughout the year and, particularly, around observed holidays. Police seek out and arrest motorists for driving impaired due to alcohol or drugs, and prosecution egregiously prosecutes those arrested. All Arizona DUI offenses are classified as criminal charges in Arizona. Penalties for a first time DUI, include mandatory jail terms, fines, fees, and assessments; suspension or revocation of driver’s license; and other penalties such as use of vehicle Ignition Interlock Device; probation and substance abuse counseling/treatment.

If arrested for DUI, you have the right to an attorney to defend your charges. You should always retain an experienced criminal attorney who defends charges in the city or jurisdiction where you were received charges to protect your rights and formally represent you.

Additional Resources:

Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety: DUI Laws

AZ Department of Public Safety – Overview of DUI Law

Arizona Revised Statutes – Impaired Driving Criminal Codes

Tempe Criminal and Traffic Court

Tempe DUI Court Procedures