Wreaths Across America Event Today in Branson

by: Jacob Blount, Ozarks First

The Veterans Task Force in Branson holds its first “Wreaths Across America” event today.

Becky Jewburys, event committee chair for the task force, said the event is to honor veterans who have passed away. She said she saw the Wreaths Across America done in Springfield and wanted to bring it to Branson.

“When I was elected to the board, the Veterans Task Force Board this year, I presented it to them and they shared my passion.”

The event took a lot of help from the community and will end with 1,070 veterans being honored at Ozarks Memorial Park Cemetery.

“It’s honestly a little dream of mine that finally come true and it makes me so proud of my community,” said Jewsbury. “That is during a year when they could’ve easily said, ‘we can’t afford to do any sponsorships.’ Instead, they stepped up.”

Mark Ballew, the store manager of Branson’s Home Depot, said his team stepped up to donate and deliver all of the American flags that will be flying above the graves of local heroes.

“It’s what we’re about, about taking care of our community,” said Ballew. “Couldn’t think of a better opportunity for us to donate to and be a part of helping our fallen veterans.”

Tom Forster, the chairman of the Branson Veterans Task Force, said everyone in the community is invited to attend the special ceremony.

“We’ll begin at 11 ‘o’clock and we have a short formal ceremony where we’ll bring in the Branson Veterans 913. They’ll do the color guard,” said Forster. “We’ve got the boy scout troops coming in to help with the ceremony, the pledge of allegiance.”

Forster said their goal is to honor and remember the local veterans laid to rest to show everyone the true price of freedom.

“Hopefully, they’ll take a minute or two to reflect and to thank those people for what ultimate sacrifice they paid for this country,” said Forster.

Everyone attending will be able to help lay wreaths after the ceremony and after the families of the heroes lay their wreaths.

A video of the “Wreaths Across America” preview can be seen at the Ozarks First Website.

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