Florida Capitol Features Wreaths Across America [SLIDE SHOW]

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Tallahassee, FL -

Col. Mike Prendergast, U.S. Army (Ret.) says more than 200,000 men and women serving in the military in the United States and overseas call Florida home.

Today (12/10), they were honored.

Alberta Simmons is consoled by military veterans and community members. But, she says just their being there honoring her son's death is comfort enough.

Simmons says, "Because he was an only child, I just want to make sure that he's never forgotten, especially in his hometown of Tallahassee, Florida."

Simmons' son, Shawn, died in Afghanistan June 29, 2008.

He and other local fallen heroes were honored during the Wreaths Across America Ceremony at the Florida Capitol Monday.

Simmons says, "It makes me very, very proud, even though I miss him. I'm going to cry right now. I miss him terribly."

The ceremony also saluted veterans and the men and women currently serving in the U.S. military.

There was the ringing of a Marine Corps Bell, a rifle volley, and the formal laying of the wreath.

Corporal Michael Kane says, "Men and women that go into harm's way to defend justice in this life and defend their brothers and sisters in combat is a call to glory. Me and my brother marines and everybody here pay homage to those men and women that have fallen in battle. They are real American heroes."

Kane was injured in 1977 when a helicopter went down during peace time training. Twenty-three fellow marines died.

"We'll always answer the call anywhere, any time." Kane says.

Wreaths Across America provides memorial wreaths for each state capitol in the United States.

Tallahassee has now participated in the program for four years.

Leon County Schools Release

Tallahassee, FL - Monday, December 10th marks the Fourth Annual Wreaths Across America program at the Florida Capitol.

The Capitol Wreath program is a moving tribute to the men and women serving in our armed forces featuring: a rifle volley, a performance by the Lincoln HS Chorus, the ringing of a Marine Corps Bell and the formal laying of the wreaths. Please see the attached program for more information.

The event is open to the public and we encourage you to attend if your schedule permits.

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