Movies and More to Celebrate Memorial Day

On Memorial Day, the United States honors the men and women who have died while serving in the armed forces. These movies, TV shows, games, and books illustrate the courage and patriotism of those fallen soldiers. Whether you're looking for a way to honor a loved one lost to military service or simply want to learn more about American history, these picks offer exciting, educational, and moving depictions of those who have served in the United States military. Given the heavy subject matter, some of these picks can be intense, so make sure you know how much violence and sad stuff your kid can handle. But with so many books, movies, and more to choose from, there's sure to be an age-appropriate pick for your family to remember and honor the sacrifices made by these servicemen and servicewomen.

Year of the Jungle Poster Image
BOOK

Year of the Jungle

age 5+

Moving yet upbeat story of girl with dad away at war.

By: Suzanne Collins (2013)
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The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee Poster Image
BOOK

The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee

age 6+

Inspiring bio of 1st Asian American woman military pilot.

By: Julie Leung (2021)
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Dear America Poster Image
TV

Dear America

age 7+

Books-inspired series brings history to life for kids.

Network: HBO (1999)
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MOVIE

Molly: An American Girl on the Home Front

age 7+

American Girl learns about sacrifice during WWII.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2006)
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BOOK

On the Wings of Heroes

age 9+

Funny, poignant life on home front during WWII.

By: Richard Peck (2007)
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BOOK

Sophia's War: A Tale of the Revolution

age 9+

Girl becomes spy in absorbing American Revolution tale.

By: Avi (2012)
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BOOK

War Stories

age 9+

Lively, nuanced D-Day story of tween and war hero.

By: Gordon Korman (2020)
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BOOK

The Saturday Boy

age 10+

Tough but warmhearted story of boy who misses dad at war.

By: David Fleming (2013)
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BOOK

Allies

age 11+

Gripping, must-read novel follows young soldiers on D-Day.

By: Alan Gratz (2019)
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BOOK

Grenade

age 11+

Tense, gripping WWII drama has powerful cost-of-war message.

By: Alan Gratz (2018)
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Max Poster Image
MOVIE

Max

age 11+

Brave military dog saves the day in intense adventure.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2015)
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My Brother Sam Is Dead Poster Image
BOOK

My Brother Sam Is Dead

age 11+

Great novel about the American Revolution for older kids.

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TV

America: The Story of Us

age 12+

U.S. history gets dramatic in worthy educational series.

Network: History (2010)
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BOOK

American Ace

age 12+

Moving, fast-paced novel-in-verse; great for teen boys.

By: Marilyn Nelson (2015)
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APP

Call of Duty: Heroes

age 12+

Popular shooter emphasizes strategy over hands-on gunfire.

Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android (2017)
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GAME

Hearts of Iron IV

age 12+

Highly detailed, frustratingly complex look at WWII.

Platforms: Linux, Mac, Windows (2016)
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MOVIE

Honor Flight

age 12+

Moving docu about WWII veterans is emotionally intense.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2014)
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BOOK

Mare's War

age 12+

Unique African American woman's WWII experience.

By: Tanita Davis (2009)
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Unbroken (The Young Adult Adaptation): An Olympian's Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive Poster Image
BOOK

Unbroken (The Young Adult Adaptation): An Olympian's Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive

age 12+

YA version of POW bio is a poignant tale of perseverance.

By: Laura Hillenbrand (2014)
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TV

American Grit

age 13+

Extreme militaristic competition with patriotic themes.

Network: Fox (2016)
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