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San Diego mother calls on community to sponsor wreaths honoring veterans

Posted at 5:12 PM, Nov 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-16 09:57:56-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - After losing her son in 2015, a San Diego mother devoted herself to making sure all veterans and fallen service members were honored.

Brenda Kaesler says she first learned about Wreaths Across America (WAA) when she laid her son Jeffrey to rest.

"He had the best smile of anyone I've ever seen. He just lit up the room. And of course that's a mother talking, but other people have said the same thing!" said Brenda.

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Jeffrey was a combat medic in the Army, serving a tour in Afghanistan and also Iraq.

Brenda says Jeffrey suffered a traumatic brain injury in Iraq, which lead to a brain aneurysm and his death several years later.

"He wanted to help, and after he got out, he said he would go back and do it all over again, just like so many of them do."

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Brenda now works as a location coordinator for WAA at Miramar National Cemetery.

Each year the nonprofit raises money to put wreaths on the graves of veterans and fallen service members.

Eight San Diego cemeteries participate in the annual event, meaning 140,339 wreaths are needed.

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Right now, the San Diego chapter is only about 7.5% to goal.

"We just need people to step up and sponsor wreaths," said Brenda.

You can sponsor one wreath for $15 or three for $30.

Wreaths will be laid on Saturday, Dec. 14 at the following locations:

  • Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma
  • Miramar National Cemetery
  • Glen Abbey Memorial Park & Mortuary in Bonita
  • Singing Hills Memorial Park in El Cajon
  • Greenwood Memorial Park near National City
  • Valley Center Cemetery
  • Fallbrook Masonic Cemetery
  • Oak Hill Memorial Park in Escondido