Beth and Bob Baylor arrange wreaths at the Ripley County Veterans Memorial in Versailles on the courthouse lawn on Tuesday of this week. They participated in bringing wreaths across the nation from Arlington Cemetery to Versailles to be placed. In the background are members of the Versailles American Legion Post Bob Strubbe, left, and Roger Kavanaugh, right. The wreaths were taken to the legion post with members distributing them to 15 cemeteries.

Wreaths Across America
touches Versailles

Wanda English Burnett

This Christmas season 90 thousand wreaths with red ribbons were placed at Arlington Cemetery and many other cemeteries across the nation thanks to the Wreaths Across America organization.

Robert (Bob) and Beth Baylor of Baylor Trucking of Sunman, were among the thousands of volunteers who participated in this year’s effort to remember our fallen heroes, honor those serving and teach children about the sacrifices made by veterans and their families.

The wreaths are transported by semi tractor-trailer rigs which make quite an impressive convoy each decorated with a wreath on the front.

Baylor’s semi has a special red, white and blue painting further symbolizing their patriotism as they roll across the miles.
“As we go along, some people stop and salute,” Bob noted as he and his wife helped unload some wreaths at their stop at the Versailles American Legion on Tuesday.

Bob told about being at Arlington Cemetery where the simple white stones are adorned with the wreaths, making an impressive picture. With a catch in his throat, Bob who is also a veteran, told about a man asking for a wreath to lay at a stone in Arlington. “It’s really something,” he shared to fellow veterans at the Versailles stop.

At Versailles, members of the legion participated in laying wreaths at the Veterans Memorial on the square at the courthouse, Cliff Hill Cemetery along with the 15 cemeteries they hold services at on Memorial Day.

This is the fourth year Baylor Trucking has donated trucks and drivers for the effort. “All the drivers want to do it,” Bob said of those employed as drivers for his company. “It’s such an honor,” he stated. This year they provided two semi's to haul the wreaths.

Wreaths Across America - a non-profit organization - was started to continue and expand the annual wreath laying ceremony at Arlington Cemetery. Their mission is three fold - to Remember, Honor and Teach.

For more information about this organization go online to WreathsAcrossAmerica.org.