The annual Wreaths Across America ceremonies take place each December, with help from veterans organizations, community groups and others who annually carry out the honor of placing live Balsam fir wreaths with red velvet bows on as many veterans’ graves as possible.
Nationally, July is dedicated to the thousands of community groups and millions of individual volunteers who spend the year raising sponsorship funding to purchase the wreaths and follow up by turning out in force in mid-December to place wreaths on the graves at some 1,640 veteran cemeteries here and overseas.
At Mountain Home National Cemetery in Johnson City, local Wreaths Across America partner groups are working now to expand the program this December, and for the first time, include all of the almost 17,000 veterans buried at Mountain Home.
Considering the some 7,200 wreaths that were placed at Mountain Home last December, the local volunteers have a tall order to fill.
Those who wish to help may do so by making a $15 sponsorship donation online at www.wreathsacrossamerica.org.
Sponsorship donations may be designated for a specific veteran buried at Mountain Home by contacting Wreaths Across America partner group representatives Bob Rambo at 423-0276-8368; Jeanette Scalf at 423-213-6805; or Scott Foster at 423-741-9934.
This year’s Wreaths Across America ceremonies will be held on Dec. 14 under the theme “Everyone Plays a Part.”
David Carter, coordinator of the Wreaths Across America ceremony at Mountain Home, said, “No role is too small, when it comes to honoring our Veterans and their families. Every single person among the millions of volunteers and supporters — from those who drive or load a truck, host a bake sale or those who come to place a wreath and say a name out loud — everyone has a part in our mission to remember, honor and teach.”
“Regardless of where they are, veterans shouldn’t be forgotten,” Carter said, “We should do our best to remember why we have our freedoms. It was provided at a great cost.”
More information about Wreaths Across America at Mountain Home may be obtained by contacting Carter at [email protected] or 423-349-4622.
If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at 423-722-0538, [email protected] or P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605.