Wreaths Across America makes way through Old Saybrook with police escort


OLD SAYBROOK, Conn. (WTNH) — The Wreaths Across America convoy arrived in Old Saybrook with police escorts from Maine, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.

“It’s wonderful,” said Vietnam-era veteran Andy Morrison from Clinton. “It’s just fantastic. Because we can never forget.”

Once again it made a stop at Old Saybrook High School.

“These kids they are patriotic,” said Karen Worcester, Executive Director of Wreaths Across America. “They are respectful. They get it.”

The Worcester Wreath Company of Maine first laid wreaths on the graves at Arlington National Cemetery as a family in 1992.

“You say the name,” said Worcester. “You just read the name and then there’s a connection and it becomes so clear that these are not statistics, they are individuals.”

In 2005 they invited others and this movement was born. 2.2 million wreaths will be delivered to Arlington and other cemeteries nationwide this year.

“It is definitely a mission accomplished,” News 8’s Gil Simmons told the crowd gathered in the high school auditorium.

He hosted the special ceremony honoring veterans and those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

“It was an eye opening experience to see how well the teachers teach the children,” said Helen Keiser-Pedersen, who rode with the convoy last year. 

She and her husband hold a 5k road race in honor of their son, fallen Army Capt Andrew Pedersen-Keel, each year.

For the first time an educational trailer also made a stop in Old Saybrook. 
Inside people can log onto one of the computers and find out how they can get a wreath laid for one of their loved ones. There are also storyboards and a video which explain what the organization is all about.

“We want people to become aware of the organization and how they can honor, remember, and teach,” said volunteer Ken Duncan.

They also have some commemorative pins and a much appreciated message for one Vietnam veteran visiting the trailer.

“Welcome home,” Duncan told the veteran. “Thank you,” he answered.

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