We will try to accommodate volunteer preferences but need people who are willing to help in multiple roles. We have over 2000 specific placement requests by family members which require locating the grave and respectfully placing the wreath. The volunteer is given a list of 9 graves, usually in the same section, and a case of 9 wreaths. These placements can take time. Family members who are placing wreaths on their own loved ones graves may want to help here as these wreaths are laid before mass placement begins.
Once 9 a.m. arrives, mass placement begins under the direction of a local Area or Section leader. Specific placement rules vary by section. Volunteers should help transport empty wreath cartons to the road and assist with loading them on vehicles or placing them in Recycling trailers.
On January 14, 2023 the wreaths will be removed by volunteers and transported to dumpsters. This normally begins at 8 a.m. and is finished before noon. DoD ID is required to access the base on this date.
Keep in mind that the cemetery is spread over 100 acres requiring good walking ability for most roles. This is a rain or shine event, so dress for conditions. Wreaths are prickly and sticky with sap so gloves and long sleeves are recommended. This is a wonderful opportunity to Teach kids about sacrifice, patriotism, and the gratitude we owe to our veterans.
Please submit the form ONCE ONLY.
It is a large form and takes longer than average to process all the contents.
Security and Parking: Access to the cemetery on December 16,2023 will be through the main gate only. All people in the vehicle 18 years and up must have government issued ID (Drivers License) out for the gate guards. Follow the instructions of the personnel directing traffic. Parking is available on both sides of the cemetery (see Traffic and Parking Map). Please post a large, legible sign on your windshield indicating whether you are heading to the "NEW SECTION" or "OLD SECTION" so traffic monitors will know where to direct you.
Vehicles with “NEW SECTION” signs will be directed to turn right at the traffic light onto Taylor Rd. Vehicles with “OLD SECTION” signs will be directed past the cemetery to the next intersection and will be directed to turn right onto Hovey Rd, then next right onto John Tower. Security may change the routing to expedite traffic. Follow The instructions of the traffic monitors and Security.
Exit the base through the main gate on Navy Boulevard immediately after leaving the Cemetery.
General Parking: On the new side please park along the Paved Access road exiting the cemetery or along John Towers Rd. Park on the grass near the administration building if directed there by Cemetery employees. Weather permitting, some parking along Taylor will also be allowed. On the old side the Public Works Parking lot will be available. Some parking within the old section is permitted, but traffic flow must not be restricted. All cars should park on the same side of the street and exit the Old Side from the Cemetery back gate.
Handicapped Parking: Only allowed on Cemetery Drive on the new side. This will be one-way traffic to allow dropping people near the site of the ceremony. On the old side handicapped parking is allowed anywhere that does not obstruct traffic flow. Please park on only one side of the road. We may have some shuttle service available.
Ceremony A full ceremony is planned and some seating will be available. Please give the handicapped or infirm right of first refusal on the seating. The ceremony begins at 11AM CST at the Memorial Plaza near the main cemetery administration building in the "New Section" and will last 30-45 minutes.
Family Time Wreath Laying will begin at 8:00 AM for specific grave placement, please be respectful of Family Members Placing Wreaths on Loved Ones Graves and DO NOT START MASS PLACEMENT TILL 9:00
Mass Wreath Laying will begin at 9:00, will pause during the ceremony, and will resume afterwards.
Wreath Pick up: Kiwanis will have two tables set up on the cemetery grounds for wreath pickup for individuals who ordered from us or WAA and specified pickup (see Pick Up Map). One will be for new side pickup to the right of the administration building (as you face it) and will have a large feather flag. The old side pickup will be by the entrance to the Columbarium on John Tower Road.
Volunteer Information: We will have information tables set up near the wreath pickup tables. For individuals wishing to volunteer who are not part of a larger group, please report to the old side.
Wreath Laying Protocol: The cemeteries have been divided in to six areas with designated Area Monitors responsible for distributing wreaths for that section (see Pick Up Map). Look for their Orange Vests.
Involve children to help them learn to honor those who have sacrificed for their freedoms.
Pick up one or two wreaths from the Area Monitor and walk, do not run, to the gravesite. Straighten and “fluff” the red bow, place the wreath, bow on top, against the grave, quietly say the recipient’s name, salute and/or say “Thank you for your service”. VA and Wreaths Across America policy is to not place a wreath on a headstone with a Star of David unless specifically requested by the family.
IMPORTANT: To maximize the visual effect on the Old Side, wreaths are placed on every other grave. For instance, in row #1 place a wreath on grave 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, etc. In row #2, place a wreath on grave 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, etc. Be sure the wreath is placed on the Veteran’s side of the headstone
DO NOT REMOVE ANY WREATH ALREADY IN PLACE, EVEN IF THERE ARE SEVERAL ALL IN A ROW. These wreaths were laid by specific family request. Simply go to the next available grave and begin your alternating placement.
In the Columbarium and similar facilities, one wreath per column of urns is allowed.
These are fresh wreaths and can be sticky, so long sleeves and gloves are recommended.
Further Questions about Volunteering
Email our Volunteer Coordinator Marcia Sevold - BarrancasVolCoord@gmail.com