Wreath-laying at cemeteries Saturday
Saturday at noon, several groups will conduct the Wreaths Across America ceremony at the Salisbury National Cemetery and the National Cemetery Annex at the Hefner VA Medical Center.The Patriot Guard Riders of N.C. will help with the ceremony at the annex, along with the Salisbury High School Air Force JROTC.
At the original cemetery site on Military Avenue, the Civil Air Patrol, assisted by the Rowan Military Honor Guard and the Rowan Veterans Council, will place the wreaths.
Seven ceremonial wreaths will be placed to remember those who served, honor their sacrifices and teach young people about the high cost of freedom. The wreaths represent the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Merchant Marine and POW/MIA.
The memorial wreaths are donated by Worcester Wreath Company of Maine and will be placed during ceremonies at more than 350 state and National Cemeteries in all 50 states and U.S. possessions. In Arlington National Cemetery, 5,000 wreaths will be placed.
Locally, more than 50 additional wreaths will be placed in each cemetery in designated areas that change each year.
The Civil Air Patrol and its members have been solicited to conduct the ceremonies, which begin at noon at all locations across the country.
Twenty-five Civil Air Patrol Cadets will serve as the Color Guard and Wreath Bearers at the Military Avenue cemetery. The Rowan Military Honor Guard will fire a rifle salute and sound “Taps.”
Representing Sen. Kay Hagan is her assistant for Veteran’s Affairs, Jean Reaves, who will speak. N.C. Rep. Lorene Coates, Air Force Gen. Gary Wilfong and Lt. Col. Richard Harkness will also make remarks.
The public is invited to join in honoring the serving and fallen heroes.
Wreaths across America is expected to place 100,000 wreaths this year with the help of more than 60,000 volunteers.
People who would like to sponsor a wreath or want more information about the events may call Ron Faggart, state captain of the Patriot Guard Riders, at 980-521-7241.