White snow mingling with evergreen wreathes and red bows created a beautiful backdrop at Glenwood Cemetery, where the annual Wreaths across America ceremony took place on Dec. 19. This year’s theme is “Remember, Honor and Teach.”
Many people were in attendance, including the Vernon Boy Scout Troops 912 and 283, Vernon Township Town Council members, Mayor Howard Burrell, U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer, members of the Sussex County Sheriff’s Department and the VFW Wallkill Valley Post 8441, and distinguished active and past members of the U.S. Military Forces and Vernon Township residents.
In 1992, the Worcester Wreath Company of Maine found they had a surplus of Christmas wreaths and decided to donate and place them in Arlington National Cemetery. The tradition has continued ever since. Today, more than 1.8 million wreaths have been laid at more than 2,500 memorial sites.
A quote from President Ronald Reagan was read during the ceremony: “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the U.S. where men were free.”
At the service’s conclusion, every volunteer placed a wreath on a veteran’s grave, said the veteran’s name aloud, and thanked them for their service to our country.