Community takes part in Wreaths Across America

Joe Nagel of American Legion Post 108 salutes after laying a wreath for the Marine Corps. Photo by D. Vaglia

By Dean Vaglia
Leader Staff Writer
243 pine branch wreaths were laid on veterans’ graves for Wreaths Across America day on Saturday, Dec. 18.
Distributed across Ridgelawn Memorial and Oxford Township Municipal cemeteries, the wreaths were bought through a sponsorship drive by Scouts BSA Troop 366. Sponsors paid for over 260 wreaths, leaving 20 wreaths to be rolled over into next year’s Wreaths Across America day.
The day began at 11 a.m. with Scouts from Troop 366, Cub Scouts and general community members placing wreaths around Ridgelawn Cemetery. Wreaths are laid upon the headstones of veterans with the layers saying the veteran’s name out loud. Finding the graves was relatively easy due to the American flags marking them, though participants had to wipe away a considerable amount of snow to identify the interred.
Representatives from American Legion Post 108 hosted a ceremony at Ridgelawn’s veteran’s memorial at noon, coinciding with ceremonies taking place across the country. Church bells rang on the hour as representatives laid wreaths on crosses marked for the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, Merchant Marine, Space Force and those classified as prisoners of war or missing in action (POW/MIA).
“We honor them and their families for the sacrifices they make each day to keep our country safe from terrorism, hatred and injustice,” Dave Perry, American Legion Post 108 Commander, said. “When you come upon a veteran or an active duty member of the military, take a moment to acknowledge them. We owe them for our way of life, and that moment of your time is well spent and appreciated.”
The ceremony ended with taps played by a Legionnaire bugler.

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