OKEECHOBEE — Wreaths Across America and Sheriff Noel E. Stephen recently presented C.O.P. member Carol Shipman with her official Wreaths Across America shirt for all her help.
Each year Carol stands out in front of businesses like Publix and Walmart and collects funds for the Wreaths Across America - Okeechobee.
Wreaths Across America was brought to Okeechobee by Civilian Posse Lt. Brad Phares with the help of Sheriff Stephen some years ago in honor of Brad's father, Bill, a Vietnam door gunner who was loved and respected locally as a local rancher.
Brad has a history of helping veterans and their families through his charitable work with Operation 300 and other veteran groups. Brad went to Sheriff Stephen for help, and here we are today.
Okeechobee Wreaths Across America will be held at exactly noon, Dec. 17, 2002, and the Evergreen Cemetery. If you would like to come out and lay wreaths on the graves of our veterans laid to rest, please help. We encourage those who have family members there to come and take care of their veterans first, then help disperse the rest.
After the ceremony is complete and Evergreen, we will have individual groups break off and go to Basinger and Ft. Drum cemeteries to lay the wreaths on the veteran's graves there.
The Eagle Riders escort the ceremonial wreaths each year with the help of Okeechobee SWAT coordinator Lt. Chris Hans with a procession from the Eagles Club at 4701 Hwy 441 SE.
Have a motorcycle? Come by the F.O.E. by 11 a.m. with your bike to the address above.
After checking in, we will have a safety brief, and the procession will start at 11:30 a.m.