NewsNational News


By the numbers: Veterans and Memorial Day

Posted at 4:51 PM, May 26, 2012
and last updated 2012-05-26 16:57:46-04

By Amy Roberts and Lindsey Knight, CNN Library

WASHINGTON (CNN) – As the country heads into the Memorial Day weekend, the traditional kick-off to the summer travel season, there are almost 1.5 million U.S soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines deployed in war zones or combat missions worldwide.

So far, more than 6,400 U.S. servicemen and women have died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — 3,000 in Afghanistan alone — and at least 48,000 more have been wounded. [SCROLL DOWN: Video highlights the meaning of Memorial Day]

Here is a look at the numbers behind the sacrifices of American military veterans of current and past wars:

More than 7,700 — Number of coalition troops who have died during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; almost all of them — about 6,400 — are U.S. troops.

593 — Number of troops from Britain who have died in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Britain has the second highest number of fatalities behind the United States.

160 — Number of coalition servicewomen who have died in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

143 – Number of U.S. servicewomen who have died in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

More than 48,000 — Number of U.S. troops who have been wounded in action during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, according to the Pentagon.

At least 3,171 — Number of coalition troops who have died in improvised explosive device (IED) attacks in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. It is the leading cause of fatalities.

50 — Countries that contributed troops to Operation Enduring Freedom through NATO/International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan and related regions.

At least 36 — Number of countries that have lost troops in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

3,000 — Number of coalition force deaths since the start of the war in Afghanistan.

Approx. 620,000 — Combined troops killed during the Civil War, which lasted from 1861 to 1865.

63 — Percent of Union troop deaths caused by disease during the Civil War.

90 — State and local chapters of Rolling Thunder, a national group participating since 1988 in Memorial Day weekend bike rides to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.

6 — Number of wreaths engraved on the sides of the Tomb of the Unknowns, in Arlington National Cemetery. Each wreath recognizes a major campaign of World War I.

58,000+ — Names inscribed on the walls of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, of U.S. troops who died serving in the Vietnam War.

8 — Women’s names on the memorial.

24 — Notes in “Taps,” the bugle call traditionally played at the end of a military funeral.

3 — Number of rifle volleys fired over the grave during internment.

3,459 — Recipients of the Medal of Honor, the highest honor for valor in action.

81 — Living Medal of Honor recipients.

38 — The number of statues there appear to be, including the reflections on the wall, at the Korean War Memorial, symbolizing the length of the war, 38 months, and the 38th parallel that divides North and South Korea; 34,000 U.S. troops were killed.

73,681 — U.S. service members who went missing in action during World War II who remain unaccounted for.

61 — Sites identified as of 2010 for excavation associated with World War II losses.

6 — Number of those still missing since 1986.

Vodpod videos no longer available.