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Local Elks Lodge helps with Wreaths Across America

Each year on the second Saturday of December, is National Wreaths Across America Day. This year’s motto was “Remember, Honor and Teach.”

From the Revolutionary War to present day conflicts, veterans are devoted sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers. They come from all backgrounds in life to place those lives on the line for freedom.

Wreaths Across America Honors these veterans not only with the wreath-laying day, but also has a Remembrance Tree program and a WAA Museum in Maine. Wreaths were laid upon headstones at Arlington National Cemetery, as well as at more than 1,600 additional veteran cemeteries in all 50 states, at sea and abroad. This includes the Iowa Veterans Cemetery in Van Meter.

Teaching involves schools, scouts, civic and religious groups through fundraising for the wreath sponsorship. These same people, young and old are involved with laying a wreath on each headstone and reciting the veteran’s name one last time…to show they are not forgotten.

Marshalltown Elks Lodge #312 was there helping for the third year by being a sponsor of WAA and by attending the wreath-laying ceremony in Van Meter.

Elks honor veterans with Iowa Veterans Home projects such as the annual Fish Fry in the spring, annual Pork Roast in the fall, helping with the Spring Carnival, Adopt-A-Vet and presenting the June Flag Day program. This year, the Lodge also used grant money to help homeless Veterans set up a new apartment/house and of course the Deer Hide project.

Contact any member of the Elks Lodge or Wreaths Across America for more information. If you have never been to this ceremony, Elks members encourage the public to attend next year on Dec. 12, 2020.

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