Eglin General Geraghty to Highlight Wreaths Across America Event in Valparaiso
Eglin Air Force Base’s top officer will be on hand to officiate the Sunset Cemetery Wreaths Across America event this December in Valparaiso. General Jeffrey Geraghty will host the event at Sunset Cemetery and Colonel Frederick Coleman, III will speak at an event at the same time at Heritage Gardens Cemetery in Niceville. Col. Coleman commands the 505th Command and Control Wing – also based at Eglin AFB.
Volunteers from Wreaths Across America ensured that a total of 1,200 military members interred across the Northwest Florida Area are remembered this Christmas season.
The event will take place nationwide at more than 3,000 cemeteries, including Arlington National Cemetery in the Washington D.C. area. The event will start at 11:00 am on December 17th. Everyone in attendance will lay a wreath at a veteran’s gravesite after a speech from a community leader.
According to the local affiliate of the Wreaths Across America non-profit, the ritual will “Remember the fallen, honor those who serve and their families and teach the next generation about the value of freedom.”
This will be the first time Heritage Gardens in Niceville will participate in the program.
Every December, Wreaths Across America places tens of thousands of wreaths at gravesites of veterans and our nations’ dead at more than 3,400 sites across the United States.
The program aims to remember those who served in conflicts a recent as this year and as long ago as the American Revolution.
You can find the Wreaths Across America site closest to you here.
Those who wish to sponsor a wreath for a gravesite can do so here. Sponsorships start at $15 a piece.
Wreaths Across America began in 1992 when the founder of the Worcester Wreath Company had a surplus of wreaths at the end of the Christmas season. Remembering a trip he took to Arlington National Cemetery as a small boy, the company’s owner donated the excess wreaths to the gravesites of the men who have their final resting place there.
30 years later, the tradition continues on the third Saturday in December.