Wreaths Across America (WAA) Brazos Valley Remembers the Fallen in December
Thanks to the incredible support and generous sponsorship of Brazos Valley Cares and the Brazos Valley community, 3,006 veteran graves throughout Brazos Valley were remembered with fresh balsam fir wreaths from Maine. Wreaths Across America came to the Brazos Valley in 2015 and placed 117 wreaths on veteran graves at 4 Bryan- College Station cemeteries. This year, 100% of the 2,737 identified veteran graves at those cemeteries were remembered, as their names are said, when the wreaths are placed by WAA volunteers.
Part of the ceremony is to say each fallen servicemember’s name, which organizers say prevents their second death. “A person dies twice. The physical death and then when their name stops being said,” organizer Ellen Fuller said.
The remaining 269 wreaths were placed at 57 Brazos Valley cemeteries and 4 veteran memorials – Brazos Valley Veterans Memorial, Brazos Valley Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Never Forget Garden, and Veterans of Brazos Valley Memorial.
American Legion Earl Graham Post 159 Commander placed one of the wreaths on the grave of 1st Lt Cyrus Earle Graham (TAMU Class of 1916), at the Bryan City Cemetery. “Lt Graham died in World War 1 at the age of 24 having never been married or having children. The members of Earl Graham Post 159 are his brothers and sisters, we are his legacy” Commander Hutchcraft said in a short remembrance ceremony.
At the Veterans of Brazos Valley Memorial located in the Veterans Section of the Bryan City Cemetery Annex, a special WAA ceremony was held for the surviving families of loved ones resting there. The time-zone adjusted WAA ceremony was held at 11amCST at Aggie Field of Honor-College Station Memorial to coincide with the noon EST placement of a ceremonial wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery and 3,702 WAA-participating locations nationwide, with a record 2.7 million wreath placements.
Brazos Valley Cares’ donation of $9,500 to Wreaths Across America Brazos Valley Chapter sponsored 966 wreaths for placement on local veteran graves. A separate Brazos Valley Cares grant of $15,000 was made to the Veterans of Brazos Valley Memorial at the Veterans Section of the Bryan City Cemetery which was dedicated on Veterans Day. Your generous investment and support at Brazos Valley Cares’ annual Steak Your Support Event and throughout the year helped make these sponsorships and grants possible – to honor our local veterans who have passed and never forget their selfless contribution to maintaining our freedoms and democracy.