Wreaths Across America to honor Ottawa County veterans

Dec 14, 2022 | Featured, Around Ottawa County | 1 comment

Diane Ball of Port Clinton lays a wreath on the grave of her father, U.S. Navy veteran Douglas ‘Skip’ McDougall in 2020 at Riverview Cemetery in Port Clinton. (Photo by D’Arcy Patrick Egan)


On Saturday, Dec. 17, around 5,000 veterans will be honored across the county as wreaths are laid at their graves in remembrance of their sacrifice and service. Wreaths will be laid in every cemetery in Ottawa County on National Wreaths Across America Day.

The public is invited to attend National Wreaths Across America Day ceremonies on Dec. 17 at 11 a.m. at Riverview Cemetery in Port Clinton; Union Cemetery in Oak Harbor; Harris-Elmore Union Cemetery in Elmore; Clay Township Cemetery in Genoa; and Catawba Island Cemetery on Catawba Island. After the ceremonies, volunteers will transport wreaths to cemeteries across the county.

The mission of Wreaths Across America is to remember, honor and serve.

“We want to remember those who are no longer with us, honor those still serving, and teach children about the sacrifices they’ve made,” said Sara Toris, who serves on the Ottawa County Wreath Committee that covers the county from Port Clinton to the west end.

Everyone, including children, are welcome to attend and volunteer.

“We definitely encourage children to come. Boy Scout troops and Girl Scout troops are welcome,” Toris said. “It’s good for them. It teaches them about veterans and the sacrifices they’ve given. It’s a really nice day.”

Diane Belden heads the Ottawa County wreath project for Catawba Island.

“We have 450 veterans buried at Catawba Island Cemetery, and every one of them will get a wreath,” Belden said.

Belden has been heading the Catawba wreath event for years and is very thankful that local residents have continually attended to help.

“It’s hard not to love Christmas, and it’s hard not to love veterans. When you put the two together, you get a lot of positive support from the community,” she said.

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1 Comment

  1. scott Gresser

    A great event I would be a part of if I was living up there.


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