11/08/2010 09:21 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Caring Strangers Give Soldiers A Final Farewell

Veterans Day serves as a national day of remembrance and appreciation of those who have dedicated their livelihoods -- and sometimes their lives -- to defending our nation.

But while the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month is but a moment of silence for most of us, dedicated people across the country devote hours every week to mourning fallen soldiers, particularly those without friends or family.

As flags are folded and cannon-shots fired, The Arlington Ladies gather to pay final homage to soldiers in Washington, DC. The group, whose mission has prevailed over 62 years, attends nearly 30 funerals over the course of a weekend.

Inspired by this troupe, The National Memorial Ladies of Houston, Texas, have vowed to attend funerals of the "oldest to the youngest" in the "heat, cold and rain."

Not confined by city limits, more than 200,000 Patriot Guard Riders blaze a trail across America to "stand for those who stood for us."

This week, CNN captured the dedicated veterans and members of the Calverton National Cemetery, in Long Island, N.Y. who perform N.O.A. (No One in Attendance) services weekly.

A cemetery representative explains that the service, which began five years ago, is for the "veterans that have supported our community, and it's important that we honor them, whether they have family or not."


You don't have to join a group or buy a bike to pay tribute. This Veterans Day, simply take a moment from your day to remember the names of Americans who have sacrificed their lives in honor of this country. For a detailed list of services near you, visit U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Alternatively, visit the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America for inspiration on how to support the troops from sending care packages, to attending screenings, to simply joining social networks.