PORTLAND, Maine — The journey to honor those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice, and their families, has begun.
Thousands of Maine-made wreaths stopped in Portland Tuesday afternoon, before making the trek to Arlington National Cemetery.
The graves of fallen soldiers are decorated with the wreaths each Christmas, thanks to Wreaths Across America.
"It really does warm your heart in cold conditions to know people will remember the fallen, their families, and we can get together and get behind something this important," said Wreaths Across America Executive Director, Karen Worcester.
One of those families is Cindy Tatum's.
"The knock at the door came on Christmas Day," said Tatum.
The Gold Star Mother lost her son Daniel in 2007.
"As you can imagine, Christmas has never been the same for us and our family since that time," said Tatum.
This is her first time riding along with the convoy. She is named the 2020 Escort Grand Marshall.
"It's all going to be a wonderful, wonderful journey," said Tatum.
The organization got a firework sendoff as the mission to remember, honor, and teach carries out, even during a pandemic.
"I encourage people as they go into the holidays and they may not be able to gather with their loved ones, just remember we are being asked to do something that military families have been asked to do through the ages and so we just need to support each other and come together," said Worcester.
Those looking to volunteer and place wreaths at cemeteries this year are asked to go to wreathsacrossamerica.org.
Folks at home can follow the convoy's journey to Arlington National Cemetery on the Wreaths Across America Facebook page.