Wreaths Across America

On Monday, December 11, York High School Faculty and Students welcomed the Wreaths Across America convoy to the York Community Auditorium. Through the rain, the convoy of police cars, wrapped WAA vehicles, motorcycles, and a large bus carrying the Gold Star Families, participants, and honored guests arrived ready for the assembly. 

Wreaths Across America’s mission — Remember, Honor, Teach — is carried out in part by placing remembrance wreaths on veterans’ headstones at Arlington National Cemetery and at more than 3,700 other participating locations every year in December on National Wreaths Across America Day.

The tradition of placing wreaths on fallen heroes’ graves began with the Worcester family’s pilgrimage to Arlington in 1992. Since then, the convoy to Arlington has grown to include more than a dozen tractor-trailers, close to a hundred Patriot Guard Riders and nearly 200 participants. In addition, wreath-laying ceremonies are now held each December not only at Arlington but also at 3,700+ locations across the U.S. and overseas. 

It was truly a community event with York resident, Jim Carabello, posting the colors along with two YHS students, Charlie Newton ('24) and Hans Bakke ('25). Local Girl Scouts led the Pledge of Allegiance. The YHS Chamber Choir sang a beautiful rendition of The National Anthem and Maxine Adelson played "Taps". 

We had a guest speaker, Lt General Michael Shields, who shared the Wreaths Across America mission of serving and succeeding.  Before concluding the event, ceremonial wreaths were presented to Commander Paul Klebaur, for the York American Legion Post 56, and Colonel Jason Beaudoin, for the United States Marine Corps. 

Because of the inclement weather, the students at Village Elementary School, Coastal Ridge Elementary School, and York Middle School were not able to give the convoy their traditional send-off -- but they sent handwritten cards, notes, and drawings to show their support. It was a wonderful ceremony honoring those who have served and a nice way to be a part of a tradition that brings wreaths to Arlington National Cemetary.