Nearly 100 people from the Ohio Nursery & Landscapers Association and the Ohio Lawn Care Association spent a Saturday in November doing landscaping work at two military cemeteries in the state as part of the 2011 Grateful Embrace.
Under the direction of Mark Grunkemeyer of Buckeye Ecocare, about 40 volunteers helped fertilize and landscape Dayton National Veterans Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio. For almost two decades, volunteers have helped out at the cemetery as part of a Grateful Embrace, where about 85 acres of turf was fertilized.
About 40 more volunteers from the Northern half of the state helped to fertilize about 65 acres and landscape sections of the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Rittman, Ohio.
This year marked the first time the Rittman cemetery was part of a “Grateful Embrace.”
In Dayton, the crew also installed 40 plants and mulch, and about five acres of turf were overseeded.
|Volunteers beautify the entrance to the Memorial Garden with new trees, shrubs and mulch.|
In addition, crews who are actually employed by the two cemeteries also pitched in for the early Saturday morning event.
“It’s very rewarding for our members to have a chance to say thanks to our veterans – many of whom have made the ultimate sacrifice,” Thompson said.
“If we can help beautify the grounds by offering our expertise and materials, it’s just a small way to say thanks to the veterans and their families.”
“It is a wonderful opportunity for me and all the volunteers to show our appreciation for what our veterans have done for all of us,” says Chris Spellacy, vice president of OLCA.
“I think everyone who participates would agree with me that it is a great experience.”
|LEFT: An honor guard prepares for the rifle salute commemorating the day’s volunteer service at the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Rittman, Ohio for a Grateful Embrace.
RIGHT: Volunteers and cemetery staff installed mulch and 40 plants, and about five acres of turf were overseeded at Dayton National Veterans Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio as part of the Grateful Embrace project.
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