This year, a Colorado Springs charity is determined to guarantee that every veteran’s grave is adorned with a wreath. Nearly 160,000 veterans are buried in Colorado cemeteries and according to Senior Veterans, INC., and only one in five Coloradoan veteran graves received wreaths last year. Senior Veterans, with the help of thousands of volunteers, is on a mission to change that.
“Our mission, along with thousands of Coloradans is to ensure that every veteran’s grave in a Colorado cemetery will receive a wreath this December,” said Senior Veterans CEO David Bolser in a release.
On Dec. 15, thousands of wreaths will be placed on graves by Senior Veterans volunteers. But before then, a lot of work has to be done.
Volunteers traveled all the way to Maine where these beautiful wreaths are made by Balsam fir and finished with a red velvet bow. The wreaths are $15 and funds to cover these costs are donated by the public. After these wreaths are transported back to Colorado, they will be placed in gravesites in Denver, Fort Collins, Greeley, Colorado Springs, Grand Junction and many smaller cemeteries throughout the state.
Senior Veterans is participating in “National Wreaths Across America Day,” which always takes place during the 3rd Saturday in December. A 26 year long tradition, more than 1,400 cemeteries are participating this year.
The tradition began when a wreath maker in Maine had a surplus of wreaths at the end of the holiday season and decided there was a better use for them than just throwing them away. Instead, these wreaths were sent to Arlington National Cemetery and placed on graves there. This tradition has endured ever since, and reached national recognition when a photo of these wreath clad gravestones went viral in 2005, bringing this tradition nationwide.
This is a beautiful way to remember and honor our veterans who have devoted their lives to our country. If you’d like to participate in this tradition this year, learn more about this annual day here or donate to Senior Veterans’ cause at www.coloradohonor.com by Dec. 3.