Washington, D.C. — This morning, U.S. Senator Susan Collins participated in the Wreaths Across America wreath laying ceremony at the U.S. Capitol. Beginning in 2007, and each December since, Wreaths Across America, based in Columbia Falls, Maine, has placed a remembrance wreath at the Capitol. The wreath is adorned with flags representing each branch of the U.S. Armed Forces as well as the POWs/MIA flag, and it is decorated with a red bow.
During the ceremony, which coincided with similar ceremonies at all 50 state capitols across the country, Senator Collins delivered remarks and joined in a moment of silence to reflect on the holiday season and to honor and remember our nation’s veterans and their families for their service and sacrifices.
“Wreaths Across America is a powerful demonstration of respect and appreciation for our veterans – both those that we’ve lost and those still with us,” said Senator Collins. “This is the work of many volunteers, many supporters, and many hands. I am so proud that this heartfelt expression of gratitude originated in the great State of Maine. We Mainers have always had special affection for those who have served. Thanks to the spirit of this tradition, we will remember and honor America’s veterans this holiday season, while also teaching generations to come of the sacrifices that have been made to secure our freedoms and to defend our liberty.”
A convoy of volunteers and thousands of Maine-made balsam wreaths departed from Maine yesterday, December 9th, and are stopping at schools and community groups for assemblies and other events. Senator Collins spoke at the convoy stop in Ellsworth Sunday morning. The wreaths are scheduled to arrive at Arlington National Cemetery on December 15th.
Thousands of volunteers are expected to lay the wreaths at the graves of each American veteran. In addition to Arlington National Cemetery, volunteers will place approximately 1.2 million wreaths at more than 1,200 locations in all 50 states and numerous national veteran cemeteries on foreign soil. For the first time this year, wreaths will be laid at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, France.