Wreaths Across Canada Inc.
Wreaths Across Canada Inc. is a non-profit organization started in 2007 by Craig McPhee a veteran of the Canadian Forces. It is based on the Wreaths Across America organization that started in 1992 at Arlington Cemetery and has now spread to 300 military cemeteries in the United States.
In 2008, WREATHS ACROSS CANADA was established by Mr. Craig McPhee, Founder and President, and retired Warrant Officer of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF).
Early in 2007, Mr. McPhee was visiting Arlington National Cemetery , in Virginia, USA, and he was awestruck by the thousands of wreaths that were placed at each of the military headstones. After enquiries were made, Mr. McPhee discovered that Wreaths Across America was the organization responsible for this endeavour, and was thus inspired to do the same for the men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces in Canada.
On December 12, 2009, the first ever WREATHS ACROSS CANADA ceremony was held at Mount Pleasant Cemetery, in St. John’s, Newfoundland. On that historic day, 800 wreaths were placed at the headstones of our fallen heroes. In 2010, an additional 400 wreaths were added to this commemorative ceremony.
On December 4, 2011, the inaugural WREATHS ACROSS CANADA National Service of Remembrance was held at the National Military Cemetery (NMC) located in Beechwood Cemetery, Ottawa. This national event was presided over by General Walter Natynczyk , (then) Chief of the Defense Staff (CDS) for the Canadian Armed Forces. Over 2,800 wreaths were placed on the headstones by over 1,500 people that attended the service. The National Services of Remembrance have been held at the NMC each year since then.
In December 2014, WREATHS ACROSS CANADA reached to Winnipeg, Manitoba. For the first time in Manitoba’s history, a balsam wreath laying ceremony was held at the Stone of Remembrance in the Brookside Cemetery Field of Honour . This was accomplished with the collaboration of Canadian Forces Base Winnipeg , Bison Transport , the City of Winnipeg , the Canadian Cadet Organizations and the Knights of Columbus .
In December 2015, WREATHS ACROSS CANADA launched a new branch at Notre Dame Cemetery , in Vanier, Ontario.
Since 2011, WREATHS ACROSS CANADA has held a ceremony at the Beechwood National Military Cemetery in Ottawa.
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