Donations sought for veterans

Published 12:10 am Sunday, November 23, 2014

NATCHEZ — Natchez veteran Oscar Seyfarth hopes to place as many wreaths as possible in the Natchez National Cemetery for veterans who paid the ultimate price.

Wreaths Across America is a non-profit national organization, which places wreaths on veteran headstones across the United States.

Seyfarth says the wreaths will teach U.S. natives that freedom comes with a price, which sometimes includes veterans giving their lives on the battlefield.

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“People should show how much they appreciate what veterans have given them,” Seyfarth said. “All the freedoms we enjoy — religion, freedom of speech and the way we live is because of veterans.”

Wreaths Across America will take place concurrently across the country at 11 a.m. Dec. 13. During this time, the Natchez National Cemetery will host a brief ceremony, where those in attendance can assist putting wreaths on the graves of veterans.

Seyfarth is in search of sponsorships throughout the Miss-Lou to support a wreath, which can be purchased for $15. All orders must be submitted by Friday

Seyfarth said if someone has a loved one who is a veteran and would like to place a wreath on their headstone should contact him, where he will make sure the wreath is available for their family member.

“Businesses can sponsor wreaths as well by ordering 10 to 15 of them,” Seyfarth said. “If I can get all businesses and folks to donate, we can fill the total number of headstones.”

The Natchez National Cemetery has more than 8,000 headstones, but Seyfarth says the ceremony never accumulates more than 10 percent of that number.

“Everyone wants to say we appreciate our veterans, this is a way to show your appreciation,” Seyfarth said.

Seyfarth’s daughter, Tami Seyfarth McDonald, served with the U.S. Navy and was buried in the cemetery in 2002.

“Every time a veteran puts on a uniform, they are saying they’re willing to lay down their life,” Seyfarth said. “It’s a constant thing, we have them out there today putting their life on the line. We have done this since the inception of this country.”

Seyfarth encourages residents to get as many wreaths as possible to sponsor a vet.

To sponsor a wreath, contact Seyfarth at 601-807-1576.