Wreaths Across America Makes Stop in Portland

11/26/2012 - Wreaths Across America Makes Stop in Portland

11/26/2012 -

Wreaths Across America Makes Stop in Portland
Public ceremony welcomes convoy as it heads south to Arlington National Cemetery

What: Next month, the City of Portland will welcome the annual Wreaths Across America convoy as it heads south for its annual wreath-laying ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC. As a result, Ocean Ave from Walton Street to Payson Park, Read Street and Canco Road will be closed to traffic while the motorcade travels to and from Cheverus High School (approximately 4:30 – 5:30 PM).

First conceived in 1992 by Morrill Worcester, President of the Worcester Wreath Company in Harrison, Maine, the project has grown to include the delivery of more than 20,000 wreaths to the Arlington National Cemetery and deliveries to more than four hundred local, state and national veteran’s cemeteries and monuments, as well as twenty-four offshore cemeteries including Normandy Beach. This remarkable effort pays homage to the sacrifices American veterans and their families have made and during the holiday season highlights the collective spirit of appreciation for these men and women.

Embarking on its twenty-first trip to Arlington earlier that day, the convoy will arrive in Portland in the afternoon and be accompanied by a Portland Police and Fire Departments escort to Cheverus High School for a brief ceremony and a blessing of the wreaths including one which will be hung on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The wreaths will then continue their trip south, arriving the morning of December 15th where the convoy will be greeted by thousands of volunteers from across the nation who will help lay the wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery. Portland Police Lieutenant Janine Roberts has been selected to lay the wreath at the grave of President John F. Kennedy, which is scheduled for approximately 11:00 AM.

Portland Police Officer Kevin Haley whose brother William Haley is buried at Arlington is credited with building strong community support for the effort with the Portland Police Department, the first department to provide escort to the convoy in the nation several years ago. Haley and other participants from the Police and Fire Departments as well as Cheverus swimmers he coaches will volunteer in Arlington during the wreath-laying ceremony.

When: Sunday, December 9, 2012
4:30 PM Arrival of convoy

Where: Keegan Gym, Cheverus High School
267 Ocean Avenue, Portland