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Arlington cemetery reverses cancellation of Wreaths Across America

Arlington National Cemetery said Tuesday that it will host the annual Wreaths Across America event in December, one day after the event was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. File Photo by Erin Schaff/UPI
Arlington National Cemetery said Tuesday that it will host the annual Wreaths Across America event in December, one day after the event was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. File Photo by Erin Schaff/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 17 (UPI) -- The annual Wreaths Across America event will take at Arlington National Cemetery, officials said Tuesday, a day after the event was canceled.

In a post on its website, Arlington National Cemetery said it was directed by the secretary of the Army to "safely host" the event after officials on Monday moved to cancel the event due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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"We appreciate the families and visitors who take time to honor and remember those who are laid to rest at our nation's most hallowed ground," the cemetery said, adding it would provide an update on the final schedule for the event "soon."

The annual December event involves wreath-laying ceremonies at more than 2,100 state and federal veterans cemeteries.

Wreaths Across America Executive Director Karen Worcester said it was unclear how the event would be carried out at Arlington National Cemetery this year in light of the pandemic.

"We do know there will not be 30,000 to 40,000 people invited to come down there," said Worcester.

President Donald Trump on Tuesday tweeted that he ordered the event to go on.

"I have reversed the ridiculous decision to cancel Wreaths Across America at Arlington National Cemetery. It will now go on!" Trump wrote.

Wreaths Across America spokesman Sean Sullivan told Washington, D.C., news outlet WTOP that while the organization could not comment on "what really happened today" he did confirm that organizers sent "phone calls, emails and pleas" to the White House to intervene in the decision.

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