Thank you to those who help with wreath laying

Dec. 18 was a very special day in Biddeford. Over 3,500 wreaths were placed on grave sites all over the city by volunteers who paid their respects to the veterans buried there. Every known veteran buried in Biddeford received a fresh wreath this year! The cold weather and anticipation of snow didn’t prevent the many volunteers from acknowledging the service that local veterans gave for their country. The outpouring of volunteers who showed up to place the wreaths was awesome!

We want to thank everyone who got involved in wreath placement at the five big cemeteries in the city as well as the “family” cemeteries, including the following:

Brown Dog Carriers and owner Graig Morin of Biddeford, who committed to be the lead sponsor and organizer of the local version of Wreaths Across America.

The St. Joseph Knights of Columbus for locating gravesites with survey flags along with placement of wreaths.

The Rotary Club of Biddeford and Saco for “manning” each depot at St. Joseph Cemetery for wreath distribution.

The Landry/French Construction team who coordinated wreath distribution at St. Mary’s and Greenwood cemeteries.

The folks at St. Demetrios who handled distribution at that cemetery.

The folks at Woodlawn Cemetery, who coordinated with the Biddeford Fire Department and the local Boy Scouts. The crews at all of the cemeteries were so helpful.

Dana Peck of the Biddeford Historical Society, who got wreaths to the 13 often-forgotten ancient family cemeteries in Biddeford.

The Scout Packs and buglers who were involved in the flag-lowering ceremonies.

The distribution and cleanup crew along with the gatekeepers who monitored traffic in and out of each location.

The local veterans’ organizations, our go-to people to make sure we got as many veterans as possible as well as assuring that it is done with respect.

The truck drivers who went to Columbia Falls in northern Maine to pick up the wreaths to go to National Cemeteries in Bourne, Massachusetts, Arlington, Virginia and Biddeford. And those drivers who split the local trailer load into smaller loads.

The City of Biddeford, for the recycling of all the empty cardboard boxes used to carry the wreaths and eventually the recycling of wreaths.

The sponsors of the event, who gave donations, paid for expenses and bought a number of wreaths, especially individual wreaths to honor their family members who served.

Coastline Property Maintenance, for allowing the use of their vehicles.

The Maine Professional Drivers Association, for use of equipment.

And most of all, thank you to our veterans for their service and sacrifice to our country, making it possible for us to enjoy our lives in the manner we have become accustomed to.

Denis Litalien
Location Coordinator, Wreaths across America

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