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Memorial Day in Israel – April 25, 2023

Memorial Day In Israel, also known as Yom HaZikaron, is observed on the 4th of the Hebrew month Iyar and falls between April and May in the Western Gregorian calendar. This year it is observed on [holiday_start_date id="63678"]. It is a national remembrance day in Israel dedicated to fallen Israeli soldiers who gave their lives to secure Israel’s future as an independent state and honor those who continue to do so.

History of Memorial Day in Israel

Yom HaZikaron was observed on Israel’s Independence Day for the first two years — 1949 to 1950. It caused anxiety among relatives of fallen soldiers, who feared that the particular remembering event would be overshadowed. It persuaded parliament to order the event to be held before Independence Day instead, to build a link between commemorating the lost and enjoying the freedom they achieved.

In 1963, Yom HaZikaron was enacted into law as Israel’s official remembrance day. After a series of terrible terrorist attacks on Israeli civilians, the Israeli government passed a resolution on February 5, 1997, instituting that Memorial Day for Israeli Fallen Soldiers should also be a memorial for Victims of Hostile Acts.

At 8:00 p.m., the event begins with a one-minute siren. The siren is blasted across the country, and everyone is required to stop all other activities and stand in complete silence in honor of those who have died. All public places of entertainment are required by law to close from Memorial eve through the next morning. All regular programming on television is halted for the day, and a 24-hour broadcast of the names and ranks of every soldier who has died in the service of Israel begins. There are memorial meetings, rallies, and commemorative events planned. Half-mast flags are flown.

In 2010, a new rite was added to the procession of Yom HaZikaron. This rite was named “Songs” in their memory and entailed using songs to tell the story of the fallen and honor their sacrifice. Singers, military troupes, and other musical groups presented such tunes.

Memorial Day in Israel timeline

1949 - 1950
A Memorial Occurs On Independence Day

On Israel's Independence Day, a ceremony honoring dead soldiers takes place.

1963
Israeli National Remembrance Day Emerges

In Israel, National Remembrance Day begins on its designated day.

1997
The Memorial Includes Other Victims

National Memorial Day in Israel includes a memorial for victims of hostile acts.

2010
A New Memorial Rite Begins

A new memorial rite called “Songs in their Memory" begins to honor the fallen.

Memorial Day in Israel FAQs

What Hebrew month is Yom HaZikaron?

Iyar is the Hebrew Month, it usually falls between May-April.

Are restaurants open on Yom HaZikaron?

No, restaurants are closed on Yom HaZikaron.

Who lived in Israel first?

3,000 to 2,500 B.C. — The city on the hills separating the fertile Mediterranean coastline of present-day Israel from the arid deserts of Arabia was first settled by pagan tribes in what was later known as the land of Canaan. The Bible says the last Canaanites to rule the city were the Jebusites.

How to Observe Memorial Day in Israel

  1. Adorn the Israeli national memorial sticker

    The ‘Red Everlasting’ flower is the national memorial flower of Israel, and it can be worn as stickers on shirts and jackets. Celebrate this holiday by adorning this sticker. If the stickers are not available in your location, look up printable images online and print yourself a good one.

  2. Light a memorial candle

    A good way to celebrate this holiday and honor the dead is to light a candle in their memory. If you can, say a prayer for the dead and their grieving families.

  3. Halt activities during the siren

    Cease all activities and stand at attention for two minutes alongside Israelis at 8 p.m. Israel time on the evening of the holiday, or at 11 a.m. Join the nation of Israel in celebrating the moment marked by the sound of the siren.

5 Interesting Facts About Memorial Day In Israel

  1. Two sirens are sounded

    There are two sirens on Yom HaZikaron — one sounds at 8:00 pm on Wednesday and the other sounds at 11:00 am on Thursday.

  2. No one goes to work

    Organizations close for the day and so do private businesses.

  3. The memorial symbol is a blood-red flower

    The symbol of Israel’s Memorial Day is a flower called ‘Red Everlasting’ also known as the ‘Blood of the Maccabees’ in Hebrew.

  4. There was a war for independence

    There was a war for Independence in which 4,000 military officers and 2,400 civilians lost their lives.

  5. There are memorial tunes

    There are songs written and dedicated to fallen Israeli soldiers and are performed on the day of the memorial

Why Memorial Day in Israel is Important

  1. It brings Israel's story to the light

    We get to bring Israel’s story to everyone. To mark the meaningful sacrifices of fallen Israeli troops.

  2. It shows support for the people of Israel

    We get the chance to show our emotional support for the Jews. We also join in honoring their dead. {It keeps the spirit of patriotism to one’s country alive

Memorial Day in Israel dates

YearDateDay
2022May 4Wednesday
2023April 25Tuesday
2024May 13Monday
2025April 30Wednesday
2026April 21Tuesday

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