Fall may be just beginning, but it is only 14 weeks until Christmas. To honor Veterans at that special time of the year, the Andrew Johnson Heritage Association is launching “A Christmas Gift of Remembrance.”
Through this drive, people can purchase wreaths for placement on Veterans’ graves at the Andrew Johnson National Cemetery. The goal is to have a wreath for each of the more than 2,000 Veteran graves in the cemetery.
The Andrew Johnson Heritage Association is seeking to involve more members of the community in providing the wreaths.
“Giving ‘A Christmas Gift of Remembrance’ is a special way to recognize the service and sacrifice given by so many Veterans for all of us, during a special season,” said George Collins, president of the Andrew Johnson Heritage Association. “Purchasing a wreath can help us remember fallen service members, honor those who served, and teach our children the value of freedom.”
All funds donated through the drive will be given to the National Park for purchase of the wreaths.
The effort is in support of “Wreaths Across America,” which began in 1992 to honor Veterans buried in Arlington National Cemetery and grew to other national cemeteries nationwide about 15 years ago. The Andrew Johnson National Cemetery will be one of more than 1,600 sites in this country and abroad participating in the effort.
David Foster, Supt. of the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site, said, “Although we strongly support the Wreaths Across America project, we are unable to cover the entire cost. We are sincerely grateful to all the donors who support the Andrew Johnson Heritage Association in achieving the goal of having all 2,000 Veterans’ graves recognized during the Christmas season.”
National Wreaths Across America Day will be December 18, and a ceremony is scheduled at 11:30 am that day at the Andrew Johnson National Cemetery.
To purchase one or more wreaths, a check can be mailed to the Andrew Johnson Heritage Association, P.O. Box 5971, Greeneville, TN 37743. Include a return address and contact information and note if you wish the wreath(s) given in memory or honor of a Veteran. You can also go to the Association web page at andrewjohnsonheritage.org to print a pledge card.
For additional information contact George Collins at 423-525-0240 or at firstname.lastname@example.org . The Andrew Johnson Heritage Association is a 501c-3 nonprofit organization founded in 1982 by Martha Johnson Patterson Bartlett, the great granddaughter of President Andrew Johnson.