Trucking once again helps ensure wreaths reach veterans’ graves

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Updated Dec 17, 2015

Truck drivers from over 100 different volunteer carriers transported 670,000 remembrance wreaths to 1,100 veterans’ cemeteries across the U.S. as part of Wreaths Across America (WAA) this year.

Remembrance wreaths, placed by volunteers, adorn veterans’ headstones at Alabama National Cemetery on Dec. 12. (Truckers News | Deanne Winslett)

Nearly 300 tractor-trailers were needed to haul the wreaths from the Worcester Wreath Company in Harrington, Me., to their various destinations. Wreaths were placed on graves at most cemeteries Saturday, Dec. 12.

A designated convoy of 11 trucks helped with the delivery of more than 240,000 wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. during a week long trek, making stops along the way to promote WAA’s message. There were 53 trucks that loaded in Dec. 11 at Arlington National Cemetery.

TCA, WAA host drivers appreciation dinner 

The Truckload Carriers Association and WAA recognized the companies and truck drivers who volunteered their time to transport wreaths to Arlington at a banquet Friday, Dec. 11.

The banquet recognized the drivers, trucking company owners and leaders, TCA staff, WAA volunteers and the nearly 500 volunteers who coordinated logistics for the Arlington National Cemetery wreath-laying.

Nashville recording artist Lindsay Lawler, the spokesperson of TCA’s Highway Angel program, performed at the event. She then presented country star Trace Adkins, who played several songs for the audience.

“I always find it difficult to adequately thank the volunteers for all the manpower, time, money and equipment they give so we can put on this huge event,” said Karen Worcester, executive director of WAA. “Trace was able to do that tonight, definitely. I can’t imagine a better way to thank them.” 

Wreaths laid at Arlington National Cemetery

by Carolyn Magner Mason

Warm sunshine, patriotism and respect for America’s veterans and fallen heroes brought record crowds to participate in Wreaths Across America Day at Arlington National Cemetery. While the volunteers placing wreaths swarmed the cemetery, the backbone of the event, truckers hauling 240,480 wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery made it happen.

It’s no surprise that the trucking industry respects the country’s Armed Forces. Many truck drivers come from a military background and the industry is fully committed to providing funds, equipment and manpower to provide transportation for this year’s WAA effort.

Derek Whittle, a driver for Cargo Transporters and a member of American Trucking Associations’ Road Team, has been trucking for 36 years. He served in the Coast Guard for four years and says it’s his honor to be part of the Wreaths Across America.

“It’s hard not to feel emotional when you see the results of all the hard work from so many. It’s such an amazing chance to give back to those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. We are proud to support this program,” he said.

Owner-operator Don Queeney from Chesapeake, Va. donated his truck and time for the second year to deliver wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery. His moving company transports  household goods of mostly military families and he says he’s seen first hand the devastation of families who are moving due to the death of fallen hero.

“This is a service I feel very strongly about. It’s something I can take a small part in to honor and show respect to those buried here and give comfort to their families,” he said.

Volunteers put wreaths down at Alabama National Cemetery

Hundreds of volunteers laid 3,700 wreaths down at Alabama National Cemetery in Montevallo, Ala. Saturday.

The wreaths arrived Thursday morning and were unloaded and set up at strategic points in the cemetery in preparation for the wreath laying. They were delivered by a driver for CalArk, Inc.

Bob Barefield, a member of the support committee, said the trucker did a tremendous job.

“I always ask the truck driver to talk with us about what it means to them to participate in Wreaths Across America and to bring the wreaths to the sites, and she was very emotional and just thought it was very good,” Barefield said.

Barefield said truckers are essential to Wreaths Across America.

“We love our veterans and we love our truckers,” Barefield said. “If it weren’t for them, not only for this but for everything the truckers do, we wouldn’t have the freedoms that we have in America. We’re just proud to be a small part of it.”

These are the 2015 volunteer carriers: 

  • 4 D’s Trucking Inc.
  • A. N. Webber, Inc.
  • AAA Cooper Memphis
  • Abilene Motor Express
  • Affiliated Movers
  • Affordable Moving Solutions
  • Allen Lund Company
  • American Central Transport
  • Apple Transfer
  • Armellini Express Lines, Inces.
  • Arpin Van Lines – Steven Meyer
  • ASA Logistics
  • ATA – Share the Road
  • Barnstormer Express LLC
  • Bay & Bay Transfer
  • Baylor Trucking
  • Best Cartage, Inc.
  • Bestway Express, Inc.
  • Big G Express
  • Blue Ridge Transport, LLC
  • Bose Corporation
  • Boyd Bros. Transportation, Inc.
  • Boyle Brothers Inc.
  • Britton Transport
  • Brown Trucking Company
  • Buchheit Logistics
  • C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc.
  • C.R. England
  • CalArk, Inc.
  • Campbell’s Express
  • Cargo Transporters, Inc.
  • Carter Express
  • Cary Moving & Storage
  • Central Oregon Truck Co. Inc.
  • Chapman Trucking
  • Chief Cornerstone’s Company
  • Cianbro Corporation
  • City Wide – Aaron Schreckengost
  • Classic Carriers
  • Convoy Systems LLC
  • Con-way Truckload
  • Covenant Transport
  • Crum Logistics Services
  • D.M. Bowman
  • Daly Movers Inc.
  • Dart Transit Company
  • Delaware Technical & Community College
  •  Delhaize America
  • Dick Butler
  • Don Hummer Trucking Corporation
  • Dragon Riders Express
  • Dutch Maid Logistics
  • Earl L. Henderson Trucking
  • Epes Transport System, Inc.
  • Erb International, Inc.
  • Estes Express Lines
  • Fields & Lehman Trucking, LLC
  • Fremont Contract Carriers
  • Freymiller, Inc.
  • G&P Trucking
  • Garner Transportation Group
  • Gateway Distribution
  • Gordon Trucking, Inc.
  • Grand Island Express
  • Gully Transportation, Inc.
  • Halvor Lines, Inc.
  • Hampton Roads Moving & Storage
  • Hannaford Supermarkets
  • Hartt Transportation Systems, Inc.
  • Heartland Express
  • High Transit, LLC
  • Hirschbach Motor Lines
  • Hobby Lobby Stores
  • Hoekstra Transportation, LLC
  • International Paper
  • Interstate Distributor Co.
  • Interstate Moving and Storage, Inc.
  • J. Grady Randolph
  • J.B. Hunt
  • Jagtrux, Inc.
  • Jay Thompson
  • Jet Express
  • Jetco Delivery
  • John Christner Trucking
  • John D. Rockefeller Career Center CDL Program
  • JTI Logistics
  • Keith Smith – United Road Service
  • Keller Logistics Group
  • Kennesaw Transportation, Inc.
  • K-Limited Carrier Ltd.
  • Knudsen Trucking Company
  • Landstar Inway, Inc.
  • Lange Moving Solutions
  • Leonard’s Express
  • Liberty Moving & Storage
  • Load One LLC
  • Lone Star Transportation
  • Matrix Expedited Service
  • Maverick Transportation
  • McGuire Moving
  • Metropolitan Trucking
  • Missouri Trucking Association
  • MJM Trucking Inc.
  • Motor Carrier Service, Inc.
  • National Carriers, Inc.
  • Navajo Express
  • NEMF
  • Network Transportation
  • New Jersey Trucking Association
  • New World Van Lines
  • North Carolina Trucking Association
  • Oakhurst Dairy
  • Ohio Trucking Association
  • Omni Moving & Storage
  • One Eleven Logistics LLC
  • PAF Transportation
  • Paul Sagehorn LLC
  • People’s Services
  • Perdue Transportation
  • Performance Trucking, Inc.
  • Pinnacle Freight Lines, Inc.
  • Poland Spring Bottling Company
  • Pottle’s Transportation
  • Pride Transport, Inc.
  • Prime, Inc.
  • Quest Global Inc.
  • R.C. Moore, Inc.
  • Raider Express
  • Regency Transportation
  • Reliable Van and Storage
  • Robert Mead
  • Saddle Creek Logistical Services
  • Schneider National
  • Scott Harris (OO)
  • Shell Rotella
  • Shumaker – Jennifer Mondor
  • Skyline Transportation, Inc.
  • Smokey Point Distributing
  • Stevens Transport Inc.
  • Swift – Stuart Rashba
  • TA/Petro – Open Road Distributing
  • Taylor Truck Line, Inc.
  • Tennant Truck Lines
  • TG Logistics LLC
  • Titan Transfer, Inc.
  • TLD Logistics Services, Inc.
  • Total Quality Logistics
  • Total Transportation
  • Transco Lines, Inc.
  • Transtar Moving Systems
  • Tribe Transportation/Express
  • Trucker Charity, Inc.
  • Try Hours Expedite
  • Tyson Foods Inc.
  • U.S. Xpress, Inc.
  • Universal Truckload Services, Inc.
  • UPS – New Jersey
  • V&J Strupp Trucking LLC
  • Wakefern Food Produce Department
  • Walmart Transportation
  • Warren Transport, Inc.
  • Waste Masters Solutions
  • Weinrich Truck Line
  • Wil-Trans
  • Witte Bros. Exchange, Inc.
  • WWC Inc.
  • YRC Freight