For the fifth year in a row, the Sarasota Military Academy is leading an effort to honor America’s fallen for the holidays.
The Sarasota-based charter military school is trying to secure sponsorships for the Wreaths Across America campaign to come to Sarasota National Cemetery to honor each veteran buried there with a remebrance wreath. SMA is looking to raise funds for 6,800 wreaths.
The Wreaths Across America campaign coordinates wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery in Washingon, D.C., as well as at veterans’ cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and other overseas burial sites. This year’s wreath-laying ceremonies will take place on Dec. 14.
“We are very lucky to have a National Cemetery in our home area and I feel it is our responsibility as a community to take care of every hero who served and is laid to rest at the Sarasota National Cemetery,” said Tanya Farley, co-chair of Wreaths Across America Sarasota, who has been involved with the campaign for four years.
Farley said SMA is partnering with area businesses and community groups to raise money and awareness for the project. The military academy is not the only group raising money for the tribute, but as in years past the school has spearheaded the effort and is it’s primary local fundraiser.
In a statement about the Wreaths Across America Campaign, Sarasota Military Academy Advancement Director Victoria Finley wrote: “In life, our veterans honored and served our country; in death, we as Americans honor and remember them. Each remembrance wreath laid at the Sarasota National Cemetery does not decorate a gravesite; rather, it honors and remembers that individual’s willingness to put him or herself in harm’s way so we can live free today.”
How to help:
Those wishing to contribute should visit www.waasarasota.com or call 866-973-2847
Contact Nolan Peterson at [email protected]