We have returned for another chance to Remember, Honor and Teach. The Chandler Elks Lodge #2429, in partnership with The Exchange Club of Chandler and Wreaths Across America, will once again be placing fresh evergreen balsam memorial wreaths on the graves of those persons who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States.
Nancy and I, on behalf of BPOE Elks Lodge #2429, would like to thank all of you who supported our cause for the past two years and hope to have your name on our sponsors’ list again this year. Our first year was a learning experience, and last year we more than doubled the number of wreaths that were placed at the Valley of the Sun Cemetery on Chandler Heights Road between Alma School Road and Arizona Avenue.
In our first year, we were able to provide memorial wreaths to about 600 sites, last year we were able to increase that coverage to over 1,700 gravesites, and this year our goal is to place a wreath on each veteran’s gravesite, all 2,700 of them.
Several organizations seek sponsorships for wreaths at national cemeteries located in various states throughout the nation and at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., but the Chandler Elks Lodge #2429 and The Exchange Club of Chandler alone solicit your sponsorships for our local cemetery.
We cannot take sponsorship requests for a specific grave; however, you are most welcome to show up on that Saturday morning, select a wreath and place it personally on the grave(s) of your choice. That ceremony commences on December 14, 2019, at 9:00 a.m. and is followed by a short memorial ceremony remembering all of the uniformed services. Additionally, you are most welcome to come out on December 21 and help us retrieve wreaths and give them to friends or neighbors to help them celebrate Christmas here in Sun Lakes.
Our lodge supports the veterans of all services. There are veterans who are transitioning from Veteran’s Administration services to public or private services and need assistance in establishing a home or apartment. There are members of the Armed Services who are experiencing family and financial difficulties, and we attempt to assist them in these matters.
If you are interested in sponsoring a wreath, please contact Nancy Espy at 480-202-0181 or Roman Martin at 602-330-1906. Cost for sponsoring one wreath is $15.00. Volunteers are most welcome.