Watchfire: A Memorial Day weekend tradition in Central New York extinguished by COVID-19

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) As is the case with many events that normally occur this time of year, this year’s Watchfire at the Fairgrounds is cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

By definition, a Watchfire is a military tradition that took place at the end of a battle. The fire was lit to provide a beacon for those lost so that they could find their way home.

With permission from the Vietnam Veterans of America Central New York Chapter 103, there is a slideshow from the 2019 Watchfire and videos from previous years.

It is custom to burn damaged or worn flags in the fire.

If you would like to properly dispose of flags, please reach out to your local American Legion or VFW.

To see more on the previous Watchfire events and for a great overview of the meaning of Memorial Day.

Learn more about the Vietnam Veterans of America Central New York Chapter 103.

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