The countdown is on to what has become known as the country’s longest veterans parade.
Wreaths Across America’s annual escort to Arlington kicks off on Dec. 10, 2022. The official route, which can be viewed here, travels down the East Coast stopping at schools, memorials, and other locations along the way to spread WAA’s year-long mission to Remember the fallen, Honor those that serve and their families and Teach the next generation the value of freedom.
“For me the Escort to Arlington is the culmination of another year of sharing the mission to Remember, Honor and Teach across this country. I say it every year, but it is truly an experience of a lifetime,” said WAA Executive Director Karen Worcester.
Stops with public events will be held in Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and Washington D.C., before arriving at Arlington National Cemetery on the morning of Dec. 17, National Wreaths Across America Day.
“The way the mission and these families and veterans are welcomed into communities, with flags waving and streets lined with children and grateful Americans, is something we always wished every person could witness,” said Worcester. “This year we’re hoping that supporters will once again join us in safely lining the roadways and welcoming the escort into their communities.”
For the 8th year in a row Chevrolet has provided the Wreaths Across America wrapped escort vehicles, transporting participating Gold Star families and veterans. In addition, Chevrolet has also donated 4,000 veterans’ wreaths for placement at Arlington National Cemetery to help honor our nation’s veterans.
“Chevrolet and its dealers are proud to support the work of Wreaths Across America once again and share the mission to Remember, Honor and Teach.
This annual tradition has become a cornerstone event for Chevrolet and its dealers here in the Northeast Region,” said Dan Adamcheck, Regional Director of Sales, Service and Marketing for Chevrolet.
In addition to Gold Star Families, Blue Star Families, volunteers, and veterans representing many eras and local Veteran Service Organizations such as the VFW, American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, VFW Auxiliary, and the American Legion Auxiliary, and more will ride in the escort vehicles. Members of the Patriot Guard Riders and Patriot Riders, and law enforcement from departments across Maine and other states along the route will provide escort to ensure safe transport for all participants throughout the week.
The Escort to Arlington is made up of 12 tractor-trailers representing Schneider National, Gully Transportation, Witte Bros. Exchange, Inc., Hartt Transportation Systems, Inc., Delhaize Transportation LLC (DBA Hannaford Supermarkets), American Trucking Associations – Workforce Heroes, Pottle’s Transportation, Cargo Transporters, Inc., Boyd Grain Inc., Hampton Roads Moving & Storage, Prime Inc., and Tyson Foods, Inc. These organizations and their professional drivers will haul a portion of the sponsored veterans’ wreaths heading to Arlington National Cemetery for placement on Dec. 17. Load One Carriers will again serve as the ceremonial wreath transporter for the escort.
WAA began more than 30 years ago as a pilgrimage by a Maine wreath maker in a single truck to deliver 5,000 wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery as a gesture of thanks. Today, National Wreaths Across America Day ceremonies are happening at more than 3,500 participating locations across the country on Dec. 17. The events are free and open to all people. To find a participating location near you to support and/or volunteer to place wreaths, click here.
Nearly 257,000 sponsored wreaths are needed to reach the goal of placing a wreath on every eligible marker at Arlington National Cemetery. To sponsor a $15 veteran’s wreath for placement this year, visit here. Volunteers placing wreaths at Arlington are required to preregister and show proof of registration on Wreaths Across America Day, You may also register at the above link by clicking the volunteer button on the page.
Reach Julia LeDoux is Julia@connectingvets.com.