Thousands of wreaths will be laid on the graves of fallen veterans this weekend
KENNEWICK, Wash. — Over 1,000 wreaths were delivered to Desert Lawn Memorial Park in Kennewick this week, now waiting to be laid on the graves of fallen veterans.
Saturday, Dec. 14, is Wreaths Across America Day. Volunteers will lay thousands of wreaths at over 2,000 cemeteries around the country. The mission of Wreaths Across America is to remember, honor and teach.
“We have to remember that freedom is not free, we have to remember to honor veterans that are living and deceased, and we have to teach our children the cost of freedom,” said Karen Schultz, regent for the Kennewick Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, one of the fundraising groups for WAA at Desert Lawn.
The history of the day dates back to 1992. It was started by Maine businessman Morrill Worcester, owner of a wreath company. He ended up with an excess of wreaths and decided to lay them on graves at Arlington National Cemetery.
In 2005, a picture of this hit the Internet and went viral, and other cemeteries decided they would also like to participate. In 2007, Wreaths Across America was born.
The wreaths are sponsored by community donations, and volunteers for Desert Lawn’s event were able to raise enough to purchase over 1,100 wreaths this year.
The wreaths will be distributed at a public ceremony at Mueller’s Tri-Cities Funeral Home in Kennewick at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
Another local WAA event is taking place in Grandview. Grandview Cemetery will have a ceremony starting at 9 a.m.