Group asks for donations to place flags at veteran grave sites on Memorial Day

NOW: Group asks for donations to place flags at veteran grave sites on Memorial Day

WEST ALLIS, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Many people are preparing for a very different Memorial Day this year. 

The Coronavirus pandemic forced the Milwaukee VA to cancel its annual public ceremony.

Now, a local group is asking for the public's help to honor fallen heroes.

“We’re trying to get donations of as many four-by-six flags as we can," said Andrew Kreblin, organizer and member of Wisconsin Truck Takeover Enthusiasts (WTTOE).

The group needs enough American flags to place at the grave sites of veterans buried here.

“So far we’re roughly up to 3,500," Kreblin said.

There are more than 30,000 service members, at rest, inside the Wood National Cemetery in West Allis.

“They sacrificed their lives for us. For Memorial Day, it’s not just one day. It’s all 365 days of the year," he added.

The group decided to act after the Milwaukee VA canceled public observances this year.

Instead, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs released that each VA national cemetery would host a private wreath laying ceremony.

The trucker group plans to place flags their Monday evening.

“We’re taking the time out of our days to give them the appreciation that need," said Timothy Rebensburg, organizer and member of the Wisconsin Truck Takeover Enthusiasts.

Organizers say they’ll adhere to both cemetery and social distancing guidelines.

“Just a group of 10 and then we’ll disperse and then I’ll have another 10 go in," Kreblin added.

Though no public event is scheduled, the national cemetery will be open to the public on Monday.

The VA is asking that people follow health recommendations, and even consider coming on different days to help alleviate crowding.

To donate flags to WTTOE, click here.

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