Wreaths placed on veterans’ graves in Centreville
CENTREVILLE — With one of the largest turn outs to date, the Centreville American Legion Riders led the annual laying of the wreaths ceremony at Chesterfield Cemetery Saturday, Dec. 15. Despite the, at times, heavy rain, more than a hundred volunteers arrived to help place wreaths at the graves of the more than 500 veterans laid to rest in Centreville.
As Wreaths across America ceremonies were taking place across the nation, Ken “Radar” Huddleston addressed the volunteers and welcomed the U.S. Naval Sea Cadets, Boy Scout Troop 464, and eighth grade students from the Kent School.
“We are all proud to be Americans that live in a free society made up of many people, from many walks of life,” said Huddleston. “The freedoms we enjoy today have not come without a price. Lying here before us and in cemeteries throughout this nation are men and women who gave their lives so that we can live in freedom and without fear.”
Huddleston spoke of the many freedoms that Americans are granted daily, such as the right to worship of their choice, travel across the countr y without needing permission, and voting for whomever they chose. “We have the right [thanks to our military] to succeed and we have the right to fail at whatever endeavor we wish to pursue.”
“Our nation was founded on the ideals of freedom, justice, and equality,” he said. “It stands as a shining beacon of liberty and freedom to the world. We thank those who gave their lives to keep us free and we shall not forget you. We shall remember.”
Addressing the veterans in the crowd, Huddleston said, many of you today have answered that call and served your country well. You have led by example and demonstrated this highest standard of citizenship.
“We are honored to know you,” said Huddleston.
Wreaths were presented by current and former service members, recognizing each branch of the military. As “Taps” played, CSM John Nizer placed a wreath in remembrance of all service members taken prisoner of war or reported missing in action.
“We will never forget you,” said Huddleston.
Wreaths in memory of the six branches of the armed services.
Capt. Hart Anderson salutes after he places a remembrance wreath in memory of those who served and are serving in the U.S. Navy.
Andy “Wizard” Cowley presents a wreath in recognition and remembrance of those served and serving in the U.S. Coast Guard.