The Hero Project

05.28.12

Memorial Day by the Numbers

As Americans take time over the weekend to remember those who gave the last full measure of devotion, The Daily Beast collects the figures that best represent what the holiday means.

4,488 – American deaths in Iraq, according to the Department of Defense.

1,973 – American deaths in Afghanistan, according to the Department of Defense.

3,000 – Total number of fatalities for all coalition forces in Afghanistan.

631.4 billion – Amount in dollars authorized by the Senate Armed Services Committee for defense spending in fiscal year 2013.

144 – Words in the “Marines’ Hymn,” the official hymn of the United States Marine Corps.

146 – Years since the first acknowledged Memorial Day in Waterloo, N.Y., which was recognized as the birthplace of the holiday by the U.S. government in 1966.

29 – Percentage of senators who are veterans.

21 – Percentage of members of the House of Representatives who are veterans.

3.3 – Percentage of the total adult population of the United States who are veterans.

24 – Number of presidents of the United States who served in the military.

34.8 million – Number of Americans expected to travel 50 miles or more over the holiday weekend.

1.4 – Percent increase over number of travelers last year.

27 to 30 – Veterans interred at Arlington Cemetery every day.

124,909 – American servicemen and women interred in foreign soil.

972 – Cadets graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point this week. They were commissioned second lieutenants.

58,272 – Names engraved on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.

21.3 – Average Army enlistment age, in years, in 2011 for active duty.

321,053 – Total number of active-duty Navy personnel.

47,943 – Navy personnel on deployment as of May 25, 2012.

3.1 million – Gravesites maintained for veterans by the National Cemetery Administration.

67,000Homeless veterans on the street on a given night, according to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans.

33 – Percent increase Obama’s 2013 budget calls for in funding for veterans assistance programs.

4.06 – Percent of GDP spent on the military, as of 2005 estimates.

123 – Years cadets at West Point have worn the familiar gray dress jacket.

109 – Search-and-rescue cases conducted by the Coast Guard on an average day.

306 – Pounds of cocaine seized by the Coast Guard on an average day.

25 – Hours British forces bombarded Fort McHenry in Baltimore Harbor in 1814, giving Francis Scott Key ample time to pen “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

818 – Estimated number of hot dogs per second consumed by Americans in the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day.

10 French-horn players in the Marine Corps band.

1,500 – Estimated number of haircuts given weekly on a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier.

20 – Years a nuclear-powered Nimitz-class carrier is capable of operating without refueling.