The cherry blossom, or sakura, has been a cultural hallmark in Japanese art and literature for centuries, and the fun associated with the two weeks of hanami -- flower viewing -- season has become a U.S. custom, too.
Soldiers of the Honor Guard lift the casket and carry it to the allocated plot at Arlington National Cemetery. The mourners follow. They sit, blanketed in grief and military tradition. “This is the place where valor rests,” the chaplain begins.
Gen. Mark A. Milley, the Army chief of staff, had a simple message for the 82nd Airborne Division and Fort Bragg during a visit Friday. "Be ready," he said noting that "none of us know what the future holds."