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Wreaths Across America is looking for donations to fill the graves of our veterans with wreaths at the Cape Canaveral National Cemetery.
The nonprofit is in need of 2,500 wreaths more this year, which are laid on top of graves in a special ceremony next month. Wreath donations are $15 each and checks can be made payable to Wreaths Across America and sent to P.O. Box 372041, Satellite Beach, FL 32937.
The public is welcome to attend the ceremony at 11:45 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 18, at 5525 U.S. Highway 1, Scottsmoor.
Local mayors and Congressman Bill Posey have been invited to attend, and the event will include a moment of silence at noon.
A statement from the organization describes the laying of wreaths as more than a “decoration” on a grave.
“We are honoring all veterans and active military members by placing live wreaths on the headstones of veterans,” a brochure explains. “Fresh evergreens have been used for centuries to symbolize recognizing honor.”
The ceremony will also feature a 21-gun salute, and eight ceremonial wreaths for each division in the military and a POW/MIA table.
Betty Jo Green, location coordinator for Wreaths Across America at the Cape Canaveral National Cemetery, expressed her desire to involve youth in the ceremony as a way to carry on a tradition of showing respect for those who served our country.
A JROTC group will present the colors, and several youth organizations and schoolchildren have been invited to attend the ceremony.
“This is our sixth year now and we’ve been very fortunate to be able to honor all of the veteran graves with wreaths,” Mrs. Green said. “The cemetery look beautiful when we do this.”
Each year, the Cape Canaveral National Cemetery grows by 30%. In its first year in 2016, the cemetery contained 1,375 graves. Today, it has grown to include 12,000 graves.
The cemetery has 318 acres in Mims that will serve the burial needs of more than 163,000 veterans for the next 100 years.
For more information, call (321) 777-1007 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.