Fox 9 News on Flags for Fort Snelling 2017

Local non-profit to put flags on every Ft. Snelling grave’

– Local non-profit Flags for Fort Snelling is planning to put American Flags at EVERY gravestone in Fort Snelling – all 200,000 of them – as a way to help kids understand what Memorial Day is really about.

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93x on Flags for Fort Snelling 2017


Memorial Day is just around the corner, and Fort Snelling is looking for help to place tens of thousands of American flags on the graves of those buried in the National Cemetery there.  They need both monetary donations to pay for the 180,000 flags and help placing them.

Click HERE to help out.

– Ross

[Fort Snelling]

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KLFD Radio on Flags for Fort Snelling

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Pioneer Press on Flags for Fort Snelling- 2016

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Memorial Day History

The History of Memorial Day

According to the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, their website describes Memorial day as the following:

[Read Full Article on the VAs Official Website]

Flags-for-Fort-Snelling-Memorial-Day-American-Veterans-Flags-Kare-11-Pic1Memorial Day History

Three years after the Civil War ended, on May 5, 1868, the head of an organization of Union veterans — the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) — established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers. Maj. Gen. John A. Logan declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30. It is believed that date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.

The first large observance was held that year at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.

The ceremonies centered around the mourning-draped veranda of the Arlington mansion, once the home of Gen. Robert E. Lee. Various Washington officials, including Gen. and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, presided over the ceremonies. After speeches, children from the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphan Home and members of the GAR made their way through the cemetery, strewing flowers on both Union and Confederate graves, reciting prayers and singing hymns.

Local Observances Claim To Be First Local springtime tributes to the Civil War dead already had been held in various places. One of the first occurred in Columbus, Miss., April 25, 1866, when a group of women visited a cemetery to decorate the graves of Confederate soldiers who had fallen in battle at Shiloh. Nearby were the graves of Union soldiers, neglected because they were the enemy. Disturbed at the sight of the bare graves, the women placed some of their flowers on those graves, as well.

Today, cities in the North and the South claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day in 1866. Both Macon and Columbus, Ga., claim the title, as well as Richmond, Va. The village of Boalsburg, Pa., claims it began there two years earlier. A stone in a Carbondale, Ill., cemetery carries the statement that the first Decoration Day ceremony took place there on April 29, 1866. Carbondale was the wartime home of Gen. Logan. Approximately 25 places have been named in connection with the origin of Memorial Day, many of them in the South where most of the war dead were buried.

Official Birthplace Declared In 1966, Congress and President Lyndon Johnson declared Waterloo, N.Y., the “birthplace” of Memorial Day. There, a ceremony on May 5, 1866, honored local veterans who had fought in the Civil War. Businesses closed and residents flew flags at half-staff. Supporters of Waterloo’s claim say earlier observances in other places were either informal, not community-wide or one-time events.

By the end of the 19th century, Memorial Day ceremonies were being held on May 30 throughout the nation. State legislatures passed proclamations designating the day, and the Army and Navy adopted regulations for proper observance at their facilities.

It was not until after World War I, however, that the day was expanded to honor those who have died in all American wars. In 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress, though it is still often called Decoration Day. It was then also placed on the last Monday in May, as were some other federal holidays.

Some States Have Confederate Observances Many Southern states also have their own days for honoring the Confederate dead. Mississippi celebrates Confederate Memorial Day on the last Monday of April, Alabama on the fourth Monday of April, and Georgia on April 26. North and South Carolina observe it on May 10, Louisiana on June 3 and Tennessee calls that date Confederate Decoration Day. Texas celebrates Confederate Heroes Day January 19 and Virginia calls the last Monday in May Confederate Memorial Day.

Gen. Logan’s order for his posts to decorate graves in 1868 “with the choicest flowers of springtime” urged: “We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. … Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.”

The crowd attending the first Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery was approximately the same size as those that attend today’s observance, about 5,000 people. Then, as now, small American flags were placed on each grave — a tradition followed at many national cemeteries today. In recent years, the custom has grown in many families to decorate the graves of all departed loved ones.

The origins of special services to honor those who die in war can be found in antiquity. The Athenian leader Pericles offered a tribute to the fallen heroes of the Peloponnesian War over 24 centuries ago that could be applied today to the 1.1 million Americans who have died in the nation’s wars: “Not only are they commemorated by columns and inscriptions, but there dwells also an unwritten memorial of them, graven not on stone but in the hearts of men.”

To ensure the sacrifices of America ’s fallen heroes are never forgotten, in December 2000, the U.S. Congress passed and the president signed into law “The National Moment of Remembrance Act,” P.L. 106-579, creating the White House Commission on the National Moment of Remembrance. The commission’s charter is to “encourage the people of the United States to give something back to their country, which provides them so much freedom and opportunity” by encouraging and coordinating commemorations in the United States of Memorial Day and the National Moment of Remembrance.

The National Moment of Remembrance encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day for a minute of silence to remember and honor those who have died in service to the nation. As Moment of Remembrance founder Carmella LaSpada states: “It’s a way we can all help put the memorial back in Memorial Day.”


-Full credit to the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs : The above information is accredited to the website.

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Trust Vets Events

New & Exclusive Trust Vets Events and Specials just for you!

Trust-Vets_Veteran-Online-Business-Directory_LogoWe want to take a moment to highlight the continued efforts of Trust Vets. In the public eye, you’ll see their mission to connect America with Veterans in Business; encouraging America to use the Business Directory every time they are looking to hire a local service.

The part the public doesn’t see as much of, are the amazing events and opportunities that Trust Vets presents to their members to support each other. You wouldn’t believe some of the amazing stories Trust Vets has helped to create. From incredible success stories of a Veteran-Owned Business after joining Trust Vets, to the heartwarming tales of friendships and bonds that have developed as a result of the connections.

Trust Vets Events and Specials

Click the link above to check out the Trust Vets and Specials they have available, all in support of driving business to American Veterans. You’ll find networking opportunities, inspirational speakers, and wonderful events that you’ll want to attend and encourage the Veterans in your life to join.


MORE BIG SPECIALS and TRUST VETS EVENTS for the TRUST VETS Family, Members and Patriots include:

  • Permit to Carry Classes for only $50 offered Saturday 2/13/2016 by Trust Vets Member, Don Raleigh, owner of Evolve Systems.

  • Third Thursday Social Mixer at Veteran owned Wander North Distillery offered by TRUST VETS member Brian Winter on Thursday 2/18/2016.

  • Trust Vets Member, Erik Therwanger, author of The Think GREAT Collection, will share concepts on Wednesday 3/23/2016 from his acclaimed book, The LEADERSHIP Connection to help leaders to fulfill much more than their position, but rather, their purpose as leaders.

    + Eight opportunities for business networking in the months of February and March!  CLICK HERE FOR NETWORKING DETAILS

Before you hire a local service, be sure you visit for a trusted business directory of American Veterans. Show your support of the success of our Veterans here on our home soil, by driving business in their direction. Trust Vets. They’ve earned it. 

-Rocky Borchardt

Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery

Volunteering for Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery

Today I spoke with a close friend of mine who was feeling badly about not being able to volunteer on Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery. She and her family are part of a tradition of camping with other close friends and their families. They make amazing memories with their children, but are sure to not forget the reason behind the holiday.

Flags-for-Fort-Snelling-Memorial-Day-American-Veterans-FlagsOf course, we do not want anyone to feel guilty for not being in town to volunteer on Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery. In fact, that is one of the main reasons that gave birth to our mission! There are many people who, for various reasons, cannot make it to the Fort Snelling National Cemetery to honor their loved ones in person. Flags for Fort Snelling wants to help bridge the distance and disconnect for those people as best we can.  Thanks to our Flag Placement Requests, with the help of our Facebook page, we can share a photo with the requester so they can see the American Flag placed at the grave site of their loved one.

To those who spend their Memorial Day weekends out of town or even at home with a BBQ, we still want you to enjoy the holiday with your loved ones. Of course, we hope you’ll take a moment to remember and honor the fallen American Heroes who gave their lives for our country, for they are the reason for Memorial Day.

The close friend of mine who prompted this post still wanted to show her support for the Flags for Fort Snelling mission, in addition to her own Memorial Day tradition.  So she purchased FFFS t-shirts for her family, and has decided to volunteer as FLAG COLLECTORS, a truly valuable need for FFFS. Flag Collectors return to the Fort Snelling National Cemetery within 10 days after Memorial Day to collect the American Flags to be used the following year. This is a drastic cost savings for FFFS, so we cannot express our gratitude for those who volunteer for this position.

So if you cannot volunteer on Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery, but still want to contribute, there are many ways to support FFFS. SHARE. DONATE. BUY FFFS MERCHANDISE.

Or CONTACT US about any other way you’d like to help. We want to hear your personal stories and why Memorial Day at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery is important to you!


-Rocky Borchardt


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Flags for Fort Snelling 2016

Flags for Fort Snelling 2016

Our very first blog? I guess the saying is true… time really does fly when you’re having fun!

Flags-for-Fort-Snelling_Veterans-Cemetary-Memorial-Day-Logo2I just want to take a moment to write on a personal level about FFFS and the efforts that have been happening since last May. As I reflect on Flags for Fort Snelling, I can’t help but chuckle a bit. The mission behind FFFS is an honorable one, yet the story behind its growth does have a bit of humor.

My name is Rocky Borchardt. I am a single mother of one very amazing and driven young girl. I am co-owner of a website design and online marketing company, in addition to working full time as a Creative Director of another growing corporation. I am the soccer coach and lead team parent for my daughter’s extracurricular activities.

Joanne Malmstedt is an impressive single mother of three outstanding young kids. She proudly works as a 911-Dispatcher for the Minnesota State Patrol, while simultaneously attending school to become a State Patrol Officer herself. Joanne somehow still finds the time to support every sport and activity her kids are truly devoted to, including Fastpitch Softball and Tae Kwon Do.

So yes, at times we chuckle that you couldn’t find two less available people to be the driving force behind Flags for Fort Snelling.  Here we are, two women with an already incredibly limited amount of personal time, trying to revive the honored tradition of placing 200,000 American Flags at the Fort Snelling National Cemetery every Memorial Day; an effort that is no small undertaking.

Still, I have to hand it to Joanne, as it was her personal and parental values that led to the birth of FFFS. As Memorial Day of 2015 approached, she wanted to take the opportunity to show her children the meaning behind the holiday. She could have simply celebrated with a poolside BBQ, and just taken advantage of the day off with her family. Instead, she called the Fort Snelling National Cemetery to inquire about volunteering to help place flags, only to discover that the tradition had gone unsupported for quite some time.  Here again, she could have turned a blind eye.

Instead, she called her friends and family into action. Within less than 3 days, 3,000 flags were collected and about 20 volunteers came to help distribute them. The new mission was sprouting.FFFS_Flags-for-Fort-Snelling-National-Cemetery-American-Veterans_Memorial-Day-Fundraiser

Here we are, about 9 months later, and we’re still plugging away as best we can. We’ve had great support from our friends and family. Trust Vets has provided fundraising opportunities and continues to help spread our message. Although this mission deserves full-time effort, I can’t help but reflect at how appreciative I am to see the progress we are still making (in spite of the humorously unavailable people driving the effort!).

Our effort continues with our next fundraiser, as we were kindly invited back to Wander North Distillery by Brian Winter, on February 18th, 2016. Please CLICK HERE to check out the event!

We’ll be checking in more often, as we are hearing and experiencing amazing tales along this journey for Flags for Fort Snelling!