November the second is the celebration of the Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) in Mexico. This special day that honors the dead can be traced back to indigenous cultures dating back to circa three thousand years. The "Lady of the Dead" festivities in the Aztec culture correspond to the modern Catrina, a clay figure that is popular. The skull is a symbol of this holiday.
I did not grow up in the Mexican border, but I had read and heard about this custom. The idea of taking food to the departed souls to “entice” them to hear your prayers was interesting but sort of scary when I was growing up.
Families in modern day Mexico and now in the United States clean the cemetery plots and decorate the graves with “offerings” which include orange Mexican marigolds (Flor de Muerto) . These flowers…( which I will never see in the same light)... are thought to attract the souls of family members that are gone.