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Several Youth Participate in the “Wreaths Across America” Local Project to ‘Remember, Honor and Teach’ December 18 in City Cemetery, 8 Others

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Local student and 4 H’er Diego Childs places a wreath and pays honor at a veterans grave

The wet and windy morning did not deter participation in the annual Wreaths Across America commemoration event in Sulphur Springs City Cemetery and Mel Haven Cemetery on Saturday December 18, 2021. In fact, more than 800 hundred wreaths were placed by volunteers upon the marked graves of veterans within the vast cemetery in an amazingly short period of time. Other Hopkins County cemeteries which held observances were Black Oak, Gaffords Chapel, Shooks Chapel, Pickton, Winterfield, Greenview and Union Cemeteries plus Old Saltillo Cemetery.

2021 is the fourth year of Hopkins County participation in the nationwide Wreaths Across America at City Cemetery, and the first year that the event was begun indoors. Due to weather, participants gathered inside the Myra Wilson Chapel for the Pledge of Allegiance, prayer and explanation of the “Remember, Honor and Teach” mission. Following the placing of wreaths onto stands representing each branch of the military including the most newly-added branch, participants moved outdoors. The identical live fir wreaths, each with a brilliant red bow, had been stacked in stations around the cemetery, and volunteers simply took armfuls and went in search of the flags marking the graves of veterans. At each grave, a solemn moment was observed. Setting their burden down, one wreath was selected, placed lovingly onto the grave marker and the soldier’s name spoken aloud, adding ‘thank you for your service’ or other meaningful honor. Families with children had the opportunity to teach by guiding their young ones in the process, and answering questions about the meaning of the day of remembrance in the local cemetery. Also, several children and youth served roles during the public ceremony held indoors.

TJ Glasscock, war veteran
who was also an early business leader in Sulphur Springs was honored with a wreath at his grave marker in City Cemetery, along with hundreds of other veteran gravesites

The 11am ceremony was opened with a prayer led by local veteran Gordon Payne, the Pledge of Allegiance led by young Heidi Northcutt, the National Anthem sung by Alina Tatum, and a Welcome given by Hon. Eddie Northcutt, 8th Judicial District Judge of Hopkins County. Next was the placing of wreaths representing various branches of service. Jakson Medelline of SSHS band closed the ceremony with taps.

You can view the Chan 18TV video of the event on KSST Youtube. From organizer Dena Loyd, a thank you is sent out to all the donors and volunteers who support Wreaths Across America at Sulphur Springs City Cemetery. To donate or make contact, please go online to wreathsacrossamerica.org/TX0613. The TX0613 is essential to direct donations to the local fund. Or contact Dena Loyd at [email protected] for additional information.

Heidi Northcutt, granddaughter of Judge Northcutt, led the Pledge of Allegiance
A large group of members of the local Marine
Corps League Detachment joined the attendees
Misses Tally Brown and Savanah Lilly place the Merchant Marines wreath
Grayson Sears places the U.S. Space force wreath, representing the SPACE branch of the USA Armed Forces.
Amelia Wilson, great-granddaughter of Myra Wilson, namesake of the Chapel
James Jones in foreground as Jakson Medelline of SSHS Band plays taps
The beautiful live fir wreaths are supplied and shipped through the efforts of a Maine wreath company and the trucking industry to supply 1.7 million wreaths in 2021 for more than 1600 locations across the nation.
This Wreaths Across America event was held in a cemetery of a large city in our country. The participants pictured are among the more than two million volunteers who prepare, ship and place wreaths annually.
This impressive photo from one of our National Cemeteries inspired the Wreaths Across America project to Honor, Remember and Teach in all the cemeteries of America, so that all fallen veterans are honored and remembered during the Christmas season
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Author: Enola Gay

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