Each year in December, on National Wreaths Across America Day, approximately one million U.S. Veterans are honored by placing memorial wreaths upon their graves at more than 1,100 locations throughout the United States, with ceremonies taking place at sea, and at each of the national cemeteries on foreign soil.
This tradition began in 2007 when the Worcester Family of Maine, along with the Veterans and volunteers who had helped with their annual holiday wreath ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, formed Wreaths Across America. This non-profit organization continues the Arlington tradition as part of its mission to Remember our fallen U.S. Veterans. Honor those who serve. And, Teach future generations about the sacrifices made to preserve our freedoms.
Deschutes Memorial Chapel and Gardens, along with the Civil Air Patrol High Desert Squadron and the Bend Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution are honored to be part of this tradition by once again hosting this year’s Wreaths Across America Day in Central Oregon, on December 16, 2017 at 9am at Deschutes Memorial gardens, located at 63875 N Hwy 97, Bend, OR. This event is open and free to the public.
This year’s event will once again feature KTVZs weatherman Bob Shaw as its Master of Ceremonies and will include a time of remembrance, the singing of the National Anthem, the posting of colors by the Civil Air Patrol Color Guard and placement of ceremonial wreaths at the various military service flags. The ceremony will then move to the Central Oregon Veterans Memorial, within the cemetery for the flag raising ceremony by the Civil Air Patrol Cadets, the playing of TAPS by Bend High School student Alex Zavala and a rifle volley provided by VFW Post #1643 and a Flyover provided by the Civil Air Patrol (weather permitting). The ceremony will conclude with the laying of the wreaths on more than 300 Central Oregonian Veteran’s Graves with refreshments to follow.
Other ceremonies will be held throughout Central Oregon at Greenwood Cemetery and outlying cemeteries in Warm Springs, Redmond, Terrebonne and Sisters, as well as at the Bend Heroes Memorial and La Pine Senior Center. For more information about Wreaths Across America, please visit their Web site at www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/our-story, or visit the official Central Oregon Wreaths Across America Facebook page at www.facebook.com/wreathsacrossamericabend.