‘Wreaths Across America’ ceremonies set for Saturday

Brinna Petland (L) and Taylor Lee (R) placed holiday wreaths on veterans’ graves last year as part of Wreaths Across America.

LANCASTER/PALMDALE – Wreaths Across America, a nationwide remembrance ceremony to recognize the service and sacrifice of veterans by honoring them with a wreath at their graves during the holidays, will take place at Lancaster and Palmdale cemeteries on Saturday, Dec. 15, beginning at 9 a.m.

The Lancaster Cemetery District Board of Trustees and the Friends of the Lancaster Cemetery (FOLC) will host the ceremony at the Lancaster Cemetery at 111 E. Lancaster Boulevard.

“We are proud and honored to be participating in this national event to pay tribute to our veterans who paid the ultimate sacrifice to protect the freedoms each of us in our County enjoy,” said Dave Owens, Chairman, speaking on behalf of the Lancaster Cemetery Board of Trustees.

With nearly 800 veterans interred at Lancaster Cemetery District, cemetery manager Dayle DeBry said this is a perfect way to honor them.

“With help from Friends of the Lancaster Cemetery and the local community, our goal has been met to provide a wreath to honor every veteran interred at the cemetery. Everyone in the community is invited to help place the wreaths [at 9 a.m.] on December 15,” DeBry said.

Shadow Hills Intermediate School has joined in once again and sponsored the Palmdale Pioneer Cemetery at the corner of 20th East and Avenue S.

The Shadow Hills Builder’s Club helped generate wreath sponsorships for the 33 veterans interred at the cemetery. Shadow Hills Principal, Barbara Gaines, says the students are excited to participate in the project again.

The ceremony at Palmdale Pioneer Cemetery will take place at 9 a.m. on Saturday, December 15 at the corner of 20th East and Avenue S. For more information on the Palmdale ceremony, contact Barbara Gaines at 661-533-7400.

Luminary candle display begins at 4 p.m. Saturday

This year, the luminary candle display, “A Thousand Lights, One Spirit,” will be held on the same day as the wreath ceremony with the actual lighting to begin with a ceremony at 4 p.m. at Lancaster Cemetery only. The luminaries will be placed along with the wreaths in the morning.

“The luminary display that we have done in conjunction with Wreaths Across America has really caught the imagination of the community,” said Cemetery Trustee Chairman Dave Owens.

The community may drive or walk through the cemetery until 8 p.m. on December 15, weather permitting.

Lancaster Cemetery is the resting place for veterans of all wars and conflicts, from the Civil War to the present day. The cemetery also serves as a repository of Antelope Valley history, with many of the founding families interred there.

The wreaths are placed to remember those who served our country, to honor their sacrifices, and to teach our younger generation about the high price of our freedom. For further details contact Dayle DeBry at 661-942-6110.