VA National Cemetery Hosts Wreaths Across America

Dec 16, 2016

A U.S. Air Force airman salutes the grave of a veteran after he’s laid a wreath at the V.A. National Cemetery in Hot Springs, S.D. in 2015.
Credit Courtesy Black Hills National Cemetery
The Black Hills National Cemetery is taking part in the 10th annual holiday "Wreaths Across America".   The event is a  wreath-laying ceremony to honor and remember our nation’s military veterans. The event is postponed in Sturgis due to weather conditions. The future will be announced. The event in Hot Springs is scheduled for Sunday, December 18. The public is invited to attend the Wreaths Across American ceremonies.

The Worcester Wreath Company has donated wreaths for grave sites at Arlington National Cemetery since 1992. Located in Maine, the company created the "Wreaths Across America" campaign in 2006 and began donating holiday wreaths in tribute to veterans laid to rest at Veterans Administration national cemeteries and state veterans cemeteries. 

Adrienne Benton is director of the national cemeteries located in Sturgis and in Hot Springs.

The public is invited to the annual "Wreaths Across America" ceremonies that take place at the Black Hills National Cemeteries in Sturgis and in Hot Springs.
Credit Courtesy Black Hills National Cemetery

“There’s a small ceremony here at the cemetery where we discuss what Wreaths Across American is and what it means to our veterans in remembering them,” explains Benton. “Then there’s a ceremonial placement of each of the branches of service wreaths. Then we ask the volunteers that are out there for the ceremony to help us take wreaths and go place the throughout the cemetery.”

Benton notes that the mission of "Wreaths Across America" is to remember, to honor and to teach.

“I really like the saying they have on their web site,” Benton comments. “It says a person dies twice. Once when they take their final breath…and later the last time their name is spoken.”

Volunteers taking part in the placement of wreaths throughout the cemeteries are asked to say the name of the veteran whose grave they’ve chosen so that his or her legacy may be remembered once again.

Note:

Holiday Wreath-laying to Honor Veterans

Who:    Members of the Knights of Columbus, representatives from the military services, veterans and their families.

        When:  POSTPONED DUE TO WEATHER AT STURGIS. Re-scheduled date/time                           TBA 

                      Wreath-laying at  Hot Springs National Cemetery is scheduled for                                     Dec. 18, 2016, at 1:00 p.m.  

        Where:            Black Hills National Cemetery

              Address:   20901 Pleasant Valley Drive, Sturgis SD  57785

                                 Hot Springs National Cemetery 

              Address:   VA Medical Center, Hot Springs, SD 57747  

             Contact:    Adriene Benton, Cemetery Director    Office: 605-347-3830