By Juli McDonald

BROCKTON (CBS) – A local charity wants to place 1,500 wreaths on the graves of soldiers Friday morning, but they need volunteers to make it happen. Organizers say it’s a great way to show patriotism.

A small mountain of holiday wreaths will be carefully placed at the graves of heroes. “Just Checking In”, the Brockton group behind the tradition, invites you to share in this really moving tribute.

wreaths Volunteers Needed In Brockton To Honor Veterans

Wreaths for veterans at Brockton cemetery (WBZ-TV/Juli McDonald)

“That first time when you’re laying the wreath, and you’re looking at the dates and you see the veteran and what war they were in, you become speechless, but then very emotional,” Mary Waldron said.

A beautiful Brockton tradition continues Friday – a simple but moving gesture, to local heroes laid to rest.

“We have the freedom to say and do these things, to have a voice. To do good. It is because of them,” Mary said.

For the third year now, Mary, daughter Casey, their friends and even strangers will lay some 1,500 holiday wreaths at the graves of local veterans.

“It’s important to check in with people,” Mary says. “Life is way, way, way too short.”

wreaths1 Volunteers Needed In Brockton To Honor Veterans

Wreaths on veterans’ graves in Brockton cemetery (WBZ-TV)

Mary knows that better than most; she lost her husband, her best friend John, five years ago – suddenly. “Just Checking In”, modeled after his kind spirit, benefits Brockton students and other local charities.

“He would check in with friends and family and just say how they’re doing,” Mary says. “That’s something we all as human beings need to be doing more of.”

And in the busy – sometimes chaotic – holiday season, the group finds true meaning in these quiet moments honoring men and women who gave so much.

“It is what it’s all about,” Mary says. “I feel my husband, who was not a veteran. But I feel in his name, his motto of ‘just checking in’, that we’re paying it forward.”

Volunteers are invited to Brockton’s Melrose Cemetery on North Pearl Street at 9 a.m.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s