Although for many the Memorial Day weekend marks the start of summer, it also is a time to remember the men and women who "gave the last full measure of devotion" in service to their country.
Here is a list of events in Walla Walla, Waitsburg and Dayton planned by local veterans to commemorate their comrades and others.
The Walla Walla AMVETS will observe Memorial Day starting at 6 a.m. by placing flags through downtown Walla Walla and lowering the flag at Land Title Plaza at First and Main Streets to half-staff.
Memorial services are planned for 9 a.m. at the Jonathan M. Wainwright Memorial Veterans Affairs Medical Center chapel, at 10 a.m. at the Blue Mountain Memorial Gardens, at 10:30 a.m. at Fort Walla Walla Cemetery and at 11 a.m. at Mountain View Cemetery.
Veterans will meet at noon at Land Title Plaza to return the flag to full staff and at 6 p.m. will retire the flags placed throughout downtown Walla Walla.
Memorial Day weekend in Waitsburg will begin at 7 a.m. Saturday with veterans and volunteers placing flags and crosses on veterans' graves at the Odd Fellows cemetery. They will then move to the Waitsburg city cemetery and place flags and crosses there.
On Memorial Day, the American Legion will place flags on Main Street starting at 7 a.m.
Washington National Guard Staff Sgt. Andrea Wysock will be the featured guest speaker at the Memorial Day ceremony at the Waitsburg city cemetery. The program begins at 11 a.m and will also include the dedication of names added to the memorial wall in the past year. A potato bar will follow in the elementary school.
Columbia County veterans will commemorate Memorial Day starting at 9 a.m. today when veterans install crosses and flags at the city of Dayton cemetery.
Starting at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, veterans will meet at the Columbia County shop entrance in Dayton to participate in the annual Veterans Day parade. The parade will begin at 10 a.m.
Two events are planned for Monday. The first is a breakfast for veterans and friends from 7-10 a.m. at the Legion Hall, 211 E. Clay in Dayton. Immediately afterwards, veterans will hold a roll call at the city of Dayton cemetery, then travel to Waitsburg for a second ceremony.
The final event will be at 4 p.m. Tuesday when veterans will remove the crosses and flags from the cemetery and store them for next year.