Wreaths Across America rolls on in 2020

A state trooper touches the headstone of a veteran, after placing a wreath on the veteran's grave.
Susan Patton | Wreaths Across America
Susan Patton | Wreaths Across America

In spite of a snowstorm that brought record amounts to some areas, the mission to honor our nation’s veterans was not detoured.

Wreaths Across America (WAA), is a national effort that grew thanks to a simple picture of wreaths laid at soldiers’ graves covered with snow at Arlington National Cemetery. As we headed down the East Coast from Maine for the 29th time, last week’s snowstorm is a humble reminder of how our mission to Remember, Honor, and Teach, got started. 

Wreaths are laid at 2,557 participating locations across America, most notably, at Arlington National Cemetery, each December. Our annual weeklong, miles-long parade of tractor trailers, wrapped vehicles carrying veterans and Gold Star Families, law enforcement and motorcycle riders, leading the escort of wreaths to Arlington for placement looked a little different this year (as there was only one symbolic semi carrying 4500 remembrance wreaths) but the mission is the same as it was the very first time, we saw snow.

This year’s annual escort of wreaths had a different look and feel due to the necessary changes being made throughout the country for health and safety. The physical journey – which included one tractor trailer load of wreaths hauled by Gully Transportation professional driver JD Walker, who is also a Gold Star Father and Navy Veteran, 11 wrapped Chevy vehicles carrying Gold Star Families, and nine police cruisers hit the snowy roads for National Wreaths Across America Day.

“For those who have had the opportunity to participate in the escort of wreaths over the years, it is truly an experience of a lifetime,” said Karen Worcester, executive director, WAA. “The way we have been welcomed into communities, with flags waving and streets lined with children and veterans, is something we always wished every American could witness. And like the wonderful song that our good friend Don Campbell wrote about this effort, we’re once again doing this for every daughter and every son, beneath the snow in Arlington.”

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