SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Scotch Plains Baptist Church Cemetery will once again joined in the Wreaths Across America (WAA) program to support the mission to Remember, Honor, Teach, on Dec. 14.  This is the fourth consecutive year that this cemetery will be participating in the national “Say Their Names” program.

Wreaths Across America is a nationwide program in which wreaths are placed at veterans’ graves in military and private cemeteries to honor those who served and sacrificed. Begun in 1992 with the laying of wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery, the program has expanded to over 1,600 locations in all 50 U.S. states and beyond.

Since the program’s inception, WAA founder Morrill Worcester has asked volunteers placing remembrance wreaths to take time to read the name on the headstone aloud. During the escort of wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery in December 2015, WAA Executive Director Karen Worcester stated, “A person dies twice: the first time, when they stop breathing, and a second time, when someone says their name for the last time.”  Ms. Worcester also notes that “We’re not here to decorate graves.  We here not to remember their deaths, but their lives.”

Sign Up for Scotch Plains/Fanwood Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

There are 92 veterans interred in Scotch Plains Baptist Church Cemetery, including several who served in the Revolutionary War. Through the efforts of American Legion Post 209 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10122, funds have been raised to place remembrance wreaths on their headstones and to say the names of all the local heroes laid to rest there, to ensure that the individuals who served to protect the freedoms of our country are not, and never will be, forgotten.

The cemetery is located at 333 Park Ave. at Grand Street near downtown Scotch Plains.  The wreath-laying ceremony will start at 12:00 Noon. The public is invited to participate in this program to recognize the dedication, commitment and sacrifice of these veterans in service to America.

Please visit www.wreathsacrossamerica.org for more information on Wreaths Across America and its mission. The local contact in Scotch Plains and Fanwood is Joe McCourt.  He can be reached via phone at (908) 377-9352 or via e-mail at joemccourt@comcast.net.