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Dozens gather at Memorial Gardens cemetery to honor Colorado Springs Veterans

Posted at 7:40 PM, Dec 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-15 21:40:26-05

COLORADO SPRINGS – Hundreds of people across the nation spent Saturday morning at cemeteries honoring the memories of those who have served in the Armed Forces.

Saturday was “Wreaths Across America Day,” and veteran’s groups from coast to coast held ceremonies simultaneously with a wreath-laying at Arlington National Cemetery.

In Colorado Springs, volunteers decorated the graves of veteran’s buried at Memorial Gardens. The American Legion said it’s important that the name of the veteran be read aloud when the wreaths are placed.

“You die twice. Once when you breathe your last breath, and then the second time when they forget your name,” said American Legion Historian, Joseph Schmidt. “So, we always make sure to say the name of each veteran out here at the cemetery so that they know that they’re remembered.”

This tradition started in the 1990s when the Worcester Wreath Company would quietly decorate the graves of service members buried at Arlington. More than a decade later, a viral photo of the cemetery spurred interest in similar events nationwide.