Preservation Foundation, Inc.
DID YOU KNOW
COINS LEFT ON TOMBSTONES
While visiting some cemeteries you may notice headstones marking certain graves have coins on them left by previous visitors to the grave.
These coins have distinct meanings when left on the headstones of those who gave their life while serving in America's military, and these meanings vary depending on the denomination of coin.
A coin left on a headstone or grave site is meant as a message to the deceased soldier's family that someone else has visited the grave to pay respect. Leaving a penny means that you visited.
A nickel indicates that you and the deceased trained at boot camp together, while a dime means you served with them. By leaving a quarter at the grave,
you are telling the family that you were with the soldier when he/she was killed.
In the U.S., this practice became common during the Vietnam war due to the political divide in the country over the war; leaving a coin was seen as a more practical way to communicate that you had visited the grave than contacting the soldier's family.
Some Vietnam Veterans would leave coins as a 'down payment' to buy their fallen commrades beer, or play a hand of cards, when they would finally be reunited.
Additional Information Links:
kennesawcemetery.org. The Official Website of the Kennesaw Cemetery Preservation Foundation, Inc. in Kennesaw, Georgia
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