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Michael164

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WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA
April 9, 2013

I first volunteered to help lay the wreaths at ANC in 2007 and was so humbled and moved by the experience that I have participated in some way every year since then. In 07 I believe we laid 10 k at Arlington, I came back in 08 and helped lay 15 K. I met Morrill Worcester in 2007 at Arlington and in casual conversation I told him how great it would be if Wreaths Across America could expand to the point that every veterans grave whether in a Nat. Cemetery or not could get a visit from someone who volunteered to remember them by laying a wreath at their grave. He said that was his vision. I also met a young lady and her two boys who had came to Arlington as a planned family event, they had planned to come along with their father but he was killed in Iraq before he made it home. This is when the significance of what Remember, Honor Teach really hit home with me.
I moved back to Ohio in 2009 and due to the nature of being an over the road truck driver I was unable to attend the formal events. Instead I had my own private ceremony at the cemetery where my Father, Brother and Uncle are buried. I would order 4 Patriot pairs so that 4 wreaths would be shipped to my house and 4 would go to Arlington, I placed one on my family members graves and one at the small veterans memorial by the flag pole. This continued until 2012 when Craig Transportation (my employer ) volunteered one of their trucks and me as the driver to help transport the wreaths to Arlington. Delivering 3200 wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery along with 33 other trucks and their drivers was one of the greatest honors I have ever had. It was truly exhilarating to see 20,000 volunteers come to help lay the 110,662 wreaths that were lain. The significance of all the volunteers that came to participate drove home the fact that our nation as a whole is truly grateful. At the same moment when the wreaths were being lain at the Tomb of the Unknown a large ceremonial wreath from WAA was being place at the Veterans Memorial at the cemetery where my family members are lain to rest. The wreath bearer was my nephew who served in both Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom, there was a color guard provided by the local American Legion post and the first annual wreath laying was started at Floral Grove Cemetery in West Unity, Oh. In hopes to expand WAA Floral Grove Cemetery is now a listed location on the WAA's website open for sponsorships of wreaths to honor ALL 347 veterans graves located there this December. The goal is to also spark interest through out the whole county so that one day as Morrill and I discussed the mission of Remember Honor Teach will spread to all of our veterans.
Wreaths Across America is a great charity to not only remember the ones who have served but also to honor the ones serving now in our military and show them that their nation is grateful and they will never be forgotten. Our youth can learn the true values of their freedoms by attending an event.
Calvin Coolidge once said ~ A Nation that forgets it's defenders will itself be forgotten.

More feedback

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Volunteer