Obamas to visit Arlington National Cemetery today

(President Barack Obama participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery)

May 30, 2011 11:09:18 AM PDT
Americans from Washington to California were marking Memorial Day with parades, barbecues and somber moments of reflection in an annual holiday infused with fresh meaning by the approaching 10-year anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. An annual holiday honoring the nation's war dead was infused with new meaning this year, coming just months before the 10-year anniversary.

The National Memorial Day parade in Washington was to include a special recognition for first responders to the 9/11 attacks and to victims' relatives. Actor Gary Sinise and Medal of Honor recipients from the Korean and Vietnam wars were among the guests.

President Barack Obama was participating in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.

Meanwhile, U.S. troops fighting in Afghanistan paused to remember the fallen in Memorial Day services. Some prayed and held flag-raising ceremonies.