DIXON – Volunteers placed more than 11,500 holiday wreaths on gravesites at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery here on Saturday (Dec. 15).
Among those participating were members of PG&E’s Veterans Employee Resource Group. The event was part of the Wreaths Across America campaign.
The wreath-laying was preceded by a ceremony that included a moment of silence, the presentation of colors, the National Anthem, speeches, a rifle salute and music from a military band.
“These wreaths eloquently illustrate the appreciation of a grateful nation,” cemetery director Cynthia D. F. Nuñez told the Woodland Daily Democrat newspaper. “This event is a great way to honor the service and sacrifice of the veterans who served to preserve our freedoms.”
The tradition started in 2006 at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery when wreaths were first placed on gravesites during the holidays to honor fallen military members. That year, about a dozen volunteers placed 300 wreaths. Through the years, the number of volunteers participating and the number of donated wreaths have continued to grow.
The 561-acre national cemetery is located 27 miles southwest of Sacramento between Dixon and Vacaville. Approximately 346,000 veterans live within the service area of the cemetery. It was the seventh national cemetery built in California and the 124th nationwide. It opened for burials in 2006 and was formally dedicated on April 22, 2007.