Lewis and Clark Young Marines partner with Wreaths Across America in hopes of raising money for wreaths at Evergreen Memorial Gardens
VANCOUVER — It is the goal of the Lewis and Clark Young Marines to sell 2,000 wreaths this season; enough to lay on every veteran grave at Evergreen Memorial Gardens.
Starting in 2014, the LCYM partnered with Wreaths Across America to sell wreaths in the Clark County area. LCYM has currently raised 401 sponsorships, at 15$ per, to purchase the wreaths.
Last year they sold 462 wreaths, leaving close to three fourths of Evergreen Memorial Gardens’ veterans without.
“It was kinda hard for the kids to walk away on that day,” said Debbie Crawford, WAA coordinator for the LCYM. “We use it to teach our Young Marines to remember and honor and respect those that fought.”
Wreaths can be purchased, or sponsored, by people in the community and are then delivered by WAA to the cemetery the morning of the wreath laying ceremony. This year’s National Wreaths Across America Day will be on Dec. 15.
Anyone is welcome to join LCYM and other community veteran groups, like the Patriot Guard Riders, at the wreath laying ceremony.
The Young Marines are a national organization with close to 10,000 members. LCYM was established 16 years ago and has members from Clark, Cowlitz, Multnomah, and Clackamas counties.
“We instill self-confidence, we have a lot of kids from every walk of life,” Crawford said. “The Young Marines is a place where all kids are equal, and they can succeed in their own way, at their own level.”