Help put a wreath on every veteran's grave

Goshen. Orange County Veterans Memorial Cemetery will host Wreaths Across America ceremony on Dec. 14. Wreaths may be purchased for $15, or three for $30, from now until Nov. 25.

Goshen /
23 Oct 2019 | 09:59

Orange County’s goal is to once again put a wreath on every grave in the Veterans Memorial Cemetery.

The county will host a Wreaths Across America ceremony at noon on Saturday, Dec. 14.

“Wreaths Across America is an opportunity for all of us to honor our veterans and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country,” said Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus. "It’s a great event that brings our community together during the holiday season and pays tribute to those who proudly served our country. We look forward to hosting the ceremony again this year and hope that you’ll support it by donating or volunteering.”

Wreaths may be purchased until Nov. 25 at the Veterans Service Agency, located at 111 Craigville Road in Goshen. Wreaths are $15 each or three for $30. Sponsor donations in any amount are also welcome. Make checks payable to “Nam Knights M/C” with WAA 2019 written on the memo line. Wreaths may also be purchased at WreathsAcrossAmerica.com using cemetery code NYOCVM.

The Veterans Service Agency is also seeking volunteers for the ceremony. The 19-acre cemetery has 12,500 plots. Approximately 3,400 men and women are buried there, including 2,700 veterans.

Approximately 1,300 people attended last year’s Wreaths Across America ceremony at the county’s veterans cemetery.

“The Wreaths Across America ceremony allows us to honor those who have sacrificed their lives for this great Country in a special way,” said Christian Farrell, the County’s Veterans Service Agency Director. “We are proud to once again take part in this meaningful event with our partners in the veterans community and appreciate the support that we have received from residents and dedicated volunteers throughout Orange County

For more information about the County’s Wreaths Across America ceremony, contact Dave Andryshak at 845-494-3768. The Veterans Memorial Cemetery is located at 111 Craigville Road in Goshen.

Tradition begins in 1992
The tradition of laying wreaths to honor veterans began in 1992, when Morrill Worcester, the owner of Worcester Wreath Company in Harrington, Maine, had extra wreaths at the end of the holiday season. Worcester remembered a boyhood trip to Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., and decided to donate 5,000 wreaths to be placed on the headstones of an older section of the cemetery. By 2014, Wreaths Across America and its national network of volunteers laid over 700,000 memorial wreaths at 1,000 locations in the United States and beyond, including ceremonies at the Pearl Harbor Memorial, Bunker Hill, Valley Forge and the sites of the September 11th tragedies.
This was accomplished with help from 2,047 fundraising groups, corporate contributions, and donations of trucking, shipping, and thousands of helping hands. The organization's goal of covering Arlington National Cemetery was met in 2014 with the placement of 226,525 wreaths.