In Raleigh, hundreds turned out for a ceremony at the State Capitol. Marines laid a wreath at the Veterans Memorial on the grounds.
Visitors were able to view displays, including photographs from past wars.
For some in attendance, the day of remembrance is one of the most important of the year.
"We're here honoring all the hereoes that died in all the wars up until now. You're talking about millions of men that have given their lives for our freedom and it should be observed and appreciated," said a Korean War veteran.
Attendance in school was a must for students in several school districts making up a missed snow day.
At Adams Elementary in Cary, teachers worked the holiday into their lesson plans. Students sang patriotic songs, and the principal told them what the day is really about.
Some parents kept their children at home, saying going to school on Memorial Day is inappropriate.
"Taps" echoed through the streets of downtown Fayetteville.
Veterans laid wreaths in honor of those who died in defense of the country.
Brig. Gen. Brian Geehan said a quote from Arlington National Cemetary captures the spirit of Memorial Day.
"These men suffered all, sacrificed all, dared and died," he said.
The ceremony included a dramatic flyover by three A-10s from Pope Air Force Base.
Monday afternoon, crowds lined downtown streets for a parade that also celebrated troops from Fort Bragg and Pope Air Force Base.
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