Memorial Day isn't just an opportunity for a barbecue or beach trip. It's a day honoring American soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. 1. It originally honored military personnel who died in the Civil War (1861-1865). 2. Roughly 620,000 Americans died in the Civil War — making it the deadliest war in American history. 3. Red poppies are known as a symbol of remembrance. It's a tradition to wear them to honor those who died in war. 4. It wasn't always Memorial Day — it used to be known as Decoration Day. 5. President Bill Clinton signed the National Moment of Remembrance Act on Dec. 28, 2000, designating Memorial Day as a National Moment of Remembrance.