Remembrance of the Debt We All Owe: Memorial Day 2020

The sight of [the flag] evokes memories of past battles and those who fought them, and to whom we are indebted. They served our country and were the better for it; by honoring them, as we do, we pay a service of our own and are the better for it.

—Walter Berns, Making Patriots, 2001

In observance of Memorial Day, USAA — a financial institution focused on the needs of active-duty service members, veterans and their families — has launched a campaign to help Americans honor and remember those who have given their lives in armed conflict on behalf of the United States.

Entitled A Poppy Blooms, A Memory Lives, the campaign is oriented around the poppy, made famous as a symbol of remembance in the poem “In Flanders Fields” composed after World War I. (Today, people around the world — particularly in Great Britain and Commonwealth countries — wear poppies to mark Armistice Day and other occasions of remembance.) USAA has created a virtual “poppy wall” with 645,000 flowers to represent the American servicemen and women who have lost their lives in the line of duty from the First World War through the global War on Terrorism.

The campaign also features resources for children, a link to the nonprofit TAPS and a video of Michael Reagan, a Vietnam War veteran who has sketched thousands of portraits in tribute to fallen heroes.

ABA proudly works with its member banks to support service members, military families and veterans, including supporting Hiring Our Heroes and other veteran employment initiatives, free banking training for service members and military spouses, Community Commitment Awards, advocating for bank branch access on military bases and more.