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Soldiers place flags at Arlington for Memorial Day

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ARLINGTON, Va. -

For the past 40 years, the ‘Old Guard' has honored America's fallen heroes by placing American flags on the gravestones of service members buried at Arlington National Cemetery just before Memorial Day weekend.

This tradition, known as "flags in," has been conducted annually since the Old Guard was designated as the Army's official ceremonial unit in 1948.

Every available soldier in the 3rd U.S. Infantry participates, placing small American flags one foot in front and centered before each grave marker.

During an approximately three-hour period, the soldiers place flags in front of more than 260,000 gravestones.

All flags are removed after Memorial Day.

American flags are also placed at U.S. soldier's and airmen's home national cemetery in Washington.

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