Wreaths Across America
Communities Honor Fallen Service Members and Veterans
Communities across America honored fallen soldiers and veterans by placing wreaths upon gravesites and memorials on Saturday, December 18. These ceremonies were held by local Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) chapters and other patriotic enthusiasts.
With help from Boy Scout Troop #933 and local citizens, the Vidalia chapter of the VFW and Auxiliary placed wreaths upon the graves of veterans in the Lyons City Cemetery. Following the placing of wreaths, participants gathered for a short memorial ceremony that featured the performance of “Taps” by Vidalia High School Student Hunter Loosberg.
“We are here to remember and honor our veterans and servicemen, but also to teach the youth about the importance of those who have sacrificed for our freedom,” Vidalia Ladies’ Auxiliary President Shirley Curl commented. “It is important to remind ourselves what this all means, where we get our freedoms and why we should cherish them.”
After the memorial at the cemetery, participants traveled to the VFW Memorial on Highway 280 near Walmart to place wreaths at the memorial.
Citizens of Montgomery County also gathered to honor United States Servicemen at the Montgomery County VFW/POW Memorial on the County Courthouse Square.
Montgomery County VFW Post #10229 Member Wanda Fountain led the ceremony, as VFW Members James Hance, Buddy Adams, Jim Bork, Russ Little, Rick Robin, Samantha Higgs, and Carl Fountain placed the wreaths.
“This year, across our country, at more than 2,700 participating locations like this one, there are millions of Americans gathering safely as one nation to remember, honor, and teach,” Fountain told the crowd. “We are proud to be Americans that live in a free society made up of many people from many walks of life.”
She continued to emphasize the cost of freedom, as she explained “freedom is not free.” VFW members placed wreaths on each pillar of the memorial to honor each branch of the military, along with those currently serving, and Missing in Action (MIA) and Prisoner of War (POW) veterans. The ceremony concluded as Loosberg performed “Taps” for the crowd. “We are honoring the generations of those that have gone before us and that are yet to come,” Fountain said. She stressed the imperativeness of these memorial events in the community. “If we do not fight for our morals and beliefs, then we will lose them,” she stated. “It is our duty to teach the younger generations to respect and honor those who fight for our freedoms so they may one day teach the coming generations.” Community members also gathered in other locations for the laying of wreaths on December 18, such as Lakeview Memorial Gardens, where another memorial service was held.