Volunteers undertook a massive wreath-laying effort Saturday to honor tens of thousands of veterans buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
A convoy of more than 20 trucks left Maine last Sunday and arrived at the cemetery early Saturday morning, where they were greeted by volunteers.
After a brief ceremony, wreath-laying began at sites throughout the cemetery, with more formal ceremonies scheduled to take place at the grave site of former President John F. Kennedy, the USS Maine Mast, and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
The wreath-laying tradition began 20 years ago with little fanfare. Morrill Worcester, owner of Worcester Wreath Co. in Harrington, Maine, and others laid 5,000 wreaths on headstones that first year to give thanks to the nation's veterans.
Since then, it has grown into an organization called Wreaths Across America with ceremonies across the country. In addition to Arlington National Cemetery, wreaths were set to be laid Saturday at 23 other locations in Virginia. Eleven places were to be decorated in Maryland, while the U.S. Soldiers' and Airmen's Home National Cemetery in Northwest would also be open to wreath-layers.
Organizers say as many as 10,000 people may join Saturday's wreath laying at Arlington.