Wreaths mobile exhibit to visit Shawnee Cemetery

LIMA —Shawnee Cemetery is set to be the site of a special visit Wednesday, May 22.

The Wreaths Across America will bring the Mobile Education Exhibit to the cemetery from 3 to 8 p.m. as part of a national tour designed to bring the mobile museum to the public and bring together the community and veterans, as well as active-duty military.

“The mission of Wreaths Across America is to remember the fallen, honor those who have served and their families, and teach the next generation the value of freedom,” said Karen Worcester, executive director of the Shawnee Cemetery Wreaths Across America organization. “The Mobile Education Exhibit provides the unique opportunity for communities to come together and share the stories of those who served and sacrificed. Through our partnership with the United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration, the Exhibit also serves as an official ‘Welcome Home’ location for our nation’s Vietnam Veterans.”

Spokesperson Lesa Wende said the mobile exhibit welcomes local veterans to share their stories about patriotism and encourages families to come to teach the next generation about freedom.

“They have coloring pages for the kids and we’ll have Boy Scouts coming to do a flag-raising ceremony at 3 p.m.,” she said. “There will be a group from Shawnee High School singing the national anthem in a choir and I’m hoping that we get veterans from the VA and civic organizations to come out and learn more about this great opportunity.”

WAA will participate in Wreaths Across America Day on Dec. 14 and has been encouraging the community to buy wreaths for the almost 600 veterans in the cemetery.

“We have them covered for this year with rollover for next year,” Wende said. “That shows you how much support the community has for the mission.”

The most important thing will be to pass on the mission to remember, honor and teach.

“I think educating people about the history and the veterans we have locally is a very worthy cause,” Wende said. “I would love to see more cemeteries become involved. I started this job two years ago and one of my goals was to get the wreaths started here in this cemetery because I have veterans in my family and I’m very passionate about supporting them.”

Anyone interested in attending the visit at 2600 Zurmehly Road can take a tour and speak with WAA representatives and volunteers.

For more information, visit wreathsacrossamerica.org.

Reach Jacob Espinosa at 567-242-0399.