Ever wonder who puts out all the flags and flowers on the graves of soldiers every Veterans’ Day?
It could be you.
In years past, the members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars or the America Legion decorated every veteran’s grave, said Aloha “Sis” Zurfluh, who has been the overseer of the I.O.O.F. Cemetery in Monroe for nearly half a century.
But as membership in those groups has declined, so too have the number of people decorating graves.
“Forty-eight years ago there were tons of people up here on Memorial Day, from Seattle and all over, and it was full of flowers,” Zurfluh said. “It would take days to get them off.”
But now some of the older graves get no attention at all, she said.
Zurfluh herself sets out a great number of decorations with a group of volunteers each year.
But more volunteers are always welcome, she said; not only to put out flags and flowers, but to help clean them up about a week later.
The locations of most of the graves of soldiers are known and cataloged on maps, and in most cases, the headstones of soldiers are marked with the wars in which they served and frequently their ranks, as well.
To learn more about how to volunteer to decorate and later clean up the graves of veterans, call Sis Zurfluh at (360) 794-7174.