Providing wreaths becomes a tradition

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Editorial: Nov. 27, 2012

ISSUE: Remembering the fallen
OUR VIEW: Time again to purchase a wreath

When honoring veterans, Hardin County does it well.

The Veterans Day weekend earlier this month included the annual countywide observance Saturday at Vine Grove, the Sunday afternoon dedication of the Veterans Tribute in Elizabethtown and an emotional ceremony Monday at the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery-Central in Radcliff.

Amid all the ceremonies, speeches and prayers, one of the loudest gestures each year always is the quietest. Countless unnamed volunteers step up to place American flags on the graves of America’s heroic patriots.

To see the cemetery adorned with tiny flags is a heart-wrenching sight.

It was repeated in other cemeteries too by devoted family members or friends who insist on remembering the sacrifice of the military. Each one is a noble and kind gesture worthy of our appreciation.

These acts of kindness also recall a new tradition that our community has embraced.

Two decades ago, Wreaths Across America was a manufacturer’s brand new idea. It now has spread to every state and became a fixture locally after the veterans’ cemetery opened outside Fort Knox.

Each year, the challenge grows as the number of graves increases. Community organizer Donna Betson, whose parents are buried in that cemetery, again is counting on community generosity to ensure each of the more than 2,500 markers in the cemetery is adorned with a lovely, seasonal wreath.

Contributions are needed. A $15 gift will buy one wreath. For every two purchased, a third is donated. So a $30 gift goes further.

If you want to give, the best way is to mail a check payable to Wreaths Across America to 702 Augusta Drive, Vine Grove, KY 40175.

If you are unable to contribute financially or want to give a measure of time and service, the wreaths will be placed by volunteers following a brief ceremony scheduled for 10 a.m. Dec. 15.

As a community, let’s complete this goal and decorate each grave appropriately again. No service man or woman should be forgotten.

This editorial represents a consensus of The News-Enterprise’s editorial board.