Memorial Day, generally known as the unofficial start of summer, was created to honor Americans who died fighting for their country. The holiday, which started after the Civil War in 1868, is not to be confused with Veterans Day, which observes those who served — or are currently serving — in the U.S. military.

To honor the brave soldiers who died during their military service, some quotes by prominent figures have been shared below, courtesy of Brainy Quote and Quotery.

1. “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” — John F. Kennedy

2. “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time and your government when it deserves it.” — Mark Twain

3. “The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender or submission.” — John F. Kennedy

4. “The dead soldier’s silence sings our national anthem.” — Aaron Kilbourn

5. “I have long believed that sacrifice is the pinnacle of patriotism.” — Bob Riley

6. “The brave die never, though they sleep in dust: Their courage nerves a thousand living men.” — Minot J. Savage

7. “For love of country, they accepted death.” — James Garfield

8. “Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are stiffened.” — Billy Graham

9. “Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.” — John F. Kennedy

10. “The willingness of America's veterans to sacrifice for our country has earned them our lasting gratitude.” — Jeff Miller

11. “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” — Nathan Hale

12. “There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America.” — Bill Clinton

13. “Better to die fighting for freedom than be a prisoner all the days of your life.” — Bob Marley

14. “What’s right about America is that although we have a mess of problems, we have great capacity, intellect and resources to do something about them.” — Henry Ford

15. “The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.” — Thomas Campbell

16. “There is nothing wrong with America that the faith, love of freedom, intelligence and energy of her citizens can not cure.” — Dwight David Eisenhower

17. “A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.” — Joseph Campbell

18. “The greatest glory of a free-born people is to transmit that freedom to their children.” — William Harvard

19. “They are dead, but they live in each Patriot’s breast, and their names are engraven on honor’s bright crest.” — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

20. “Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.” — George Washington

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