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Days of Remembrance in the United States


The United States Congress established the Days of Remembrance as the nation’s annual commemoration of the Holocaust. 

Holocaust Remembrance Day was commemorated on Monday, 8 April 2013.  Observances and remembrance activities can occur during the week of Remembrance that runs from the Sunday before Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom Hashoah) through the following Sunday.  Days of Remembrance are observed by state and local governments, military bases, workplaces, schools, churches, synagogues, and civic centers.  Click here to learn how to participate in the Days of Remembrance. 

The US Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) designated Never Again: Heeding the Warning Signs as the theme for the 2013 observance.  In accordance with its Congressional mandate, USHMM is responsible for leading the nation in commemorating the Days of Remembrance and for encouraging and sponsoring appropriate observances throughout the United States.  Since 1982, the Museum has organized and led the national Days of Remembrance ceremony in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda, with Holocaust survivors, liberators, members of Congress, White House officials, the diplomatic corps, and community leaders in attendance.

President Barack Obama also issued the following statement on Yom Hashoah:

“I join people here in the United States, in Israel, and around the world in observing Holocaust Remembrance Day.  Today, we honor the memories of the six million Jewish victims and millions of others who perished in the darkness of the Shoah.  As we reflect on the beautiful lives lost, and their great potential that would never be fulfilled, we also pay tribute to all those who resisted the Nazis’ heinous acts and all those who survived.

On my recent trip to Israel, I had the opportunity to visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s national Holocaust memorial, and reaffirm our collective responsibility to confront anti-Semitism, prejudice, and intolerance across the world.  On this Yom Hashoah, we must accept the full responsibility of remembrance, as nations and as individuals—not simply to pledge “never again,” but to commit ourselves to the understanding, empathy and compassion that is the foundation of peace and human dignity.”