Lend A Hand: Wreathes Across America

In Life They Honored Their Country; In Death, May Their Country Honor Them – Wreathes Across America stops at Kent Island American Legion in route to Arlington
By Avra Sullivan

In this time of celebrating family and friends, giving gifts to those we love and being thankful for our many blessings, there is a unique way local residents can say thank you to those who gave us the greatest gift, our freedom. Wreaths across America is a non-profit organization started in 1992 by a Maine businessman who wanted to honor our country’ veterans. As the owner of Worcester Wreath Company, Morrill Worcester had an opportunity to put to use an excess of wreaths one holiday season. He and his family donated the wreaths and made arrangements for them to be placed on graves in the older, less visited section of Arlington National Cemetery. As this became an annual event, more and more people wanted to volunteer to help. In 2006 the Patriot Guard Riders volunteered to escort the trucks of wreaths, hauled in donated trucks, to their Arlington destination. This year thousands of wreaths and over 150 volunteers will travel from Harrington, Maine to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia to honor the memory of our fallen soldiers. Across the country in over 600 locations, similar ceremonies will be held simultaneously. On December 14th, this convoy stops at the Kent Island American Legion in Stevensville. The legion will be hosting a home cooked luncheon for the volunteers who will then head to Arlington with wreathes. Wreaths Across America receives no government funding and relies solely on volunteers, donations and volunteer trucking companies to help fulfill their motto of “Remember, Honor and Teach”.

The Kent Island American Legion is asking for volunteers to help assist with the luncheon by preparing, serving and cleaning while the convoy is here. They would also like to encourage local residents to line both sides of Rt. 18 from the Legion to the by-pass to welcome them, and as they depart on the rest of their journey. The group is expected to arrive around 11:00am and depart by 12:30pm. This is the second year the Wreathes Across America troupe has stopped in Kent Island, the legion is very excited to have them back. Anyone wishing to help volunteer at the luncheon can contact Nikki Randolph at 410-643-2728. For more information on Wreaths Across America, or to sponsor a wreath, you can visit their website at www.wreathsacrossamerica.org.