Since 1992, a wreath company in Maine has been donating Christmas wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery as a gesture of remembrance to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.
The inspiration for the Arlington Wreath Project first sparked in the mind of a 12-year-old paper boy who visited the national cemetery as part of a trip he had won to Washington, D.C. The boy, Morrill Worcester, grew up and founded the Worcester Wreath Company, but he never forgot the visit to the national cemetery as a boy. He decided that he had to do something to honor, and to remember our fallen heroes.
He began the project by placing wreaths on graves in an older section of the cemetery that received few visitors. Since then, more than 100,000 wreaths have been donated, and the project has grown in national interest.
At this year’s ceremonies, thousands of people came together to place 24,000 wreaths in four sections of the cemetery, including Section 60, where current active-duty military are buried, and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
“It’s great to be with several thousand of my closest friends. Here we are visiting the families of 300 and some odd thousand . . . I can’t believe that the first time I was here 19 years ago there were probably a dozen people and now look here,” said Worcester. He hopes to place a wreath on every gravesite in the cemetery next holiday season.
It is awe-inspiring to see thousands of wreaths resting upon thousands of graves. The scene gives us pause as we prepare for our own holiday traditions, to honor and to never forget.
Holiday blessings to all, from all of us at Alpha.
Note: All representation coordinated by Alpha is provided by our employees, the Advocates, who are accredited by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). No private organization that trains and employs accredited agents has been legally recognized by the VA for the purposes of preparation, presentation, and prosecution of claims. This work must be done by the Advocates themselves and not organizations.