Local volunteers hope to ensure that veterans laid to rest at Oak Dale Cemetery are honored on Dec. 15, National Wreaths Across America Day. Ceremonies are to be held simultaneously across the country at more than 1,200 locations. The goal is to place a live, balsam fir wreath at the headstone of every veteran buried at these sites.
From now until November, volunteers will host fundraisers to sponsor at least 250 wreaths to honor veterans at Oak Dale Cemetery. Each wreath sponsorship costs $15, with $5 going to the local fundraising for Urbana Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) programs.
Order deadline is Nov. 17. Orders may be placed by contacting local Chair Pat Detwiler at 937-597-4446 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Order forms will be available at Vernon Funeral Home, the county Chamber of Commerce, First Presbyterian Church, The Spotted Cow, other selected Urbana business locations, and from Urbana Chapter DAR members.
On Dec. 15, participants may lay their wreaths at gravesites or volunteers will place them. To volunteer to lay wreaths at Oak Dale Cemetery, contact Detwiler by Nov. 17. At least 50 volunteers are needed to accomplish this first wreath-laying.
“Every donation and wreath sponsorship is a meaningful gift from an appreciative supporter who knows what it means to serve and sacrifice for the freedoms we all enjoy,” said Karen Worcester, executive director of Wreaths Across America. “We are so grateful to the community of Urbana, Ohio, for participating in our mission to Remember, Honor and Teach.”
Funds raised will go toward local DAR efforts to increase the Wreaths Across America project next year. The Urbana Chapter hopes to eventually cover the 1,677-plus veterans’ graves in the cemetery, then expand to other cemeteries in the area. The Urbana Chapter DAR supports local veterans appreciation programs, education of the public about various historical and patriotic efforts, local patriotism activities and local efforts in historic preservation.
“The Urbana Chapter has a long history of supporting the military and veterans in Champaign County. We are honored and excited about this opportunity to place wreaths at the graves of our honored local veterans, and we are hoping that this is just the beginning of a community-wide project to honor our deceased veterans. The Daughters of the American Revolution are dedicated to honoring our history. Participating in this wreath laying project is an excellent opportunity for our entire community to join together,” said Kim Snyder, Urbana DAR Chapter Regent.
National Wreaths Across America Day is a free event, open to all. For more information, to donate or to sign up to volunteer, visit www.WreathsAcrossAmerica.org.
About Wreaths Across America
Wreaths Across America is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded to continue and expand the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery begun by Maine businessman Morrill Worcester in 1992. The organization’s mission – Remember, Honor, Teach – is carried out in part each year by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies in December at Arlington, as well as at more than 1,200 veterans’ cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and beyond.
Submitted by Urbana Chapter DAR.