A wreath. Adorned with evergreens to show strength, even in the harshest winter’s cold. And flowers to show our fragility and beauty. What does it mean? Wreaths go back a very long way to Southern Europe and even as far back as the Etruscans. Wreaths denote a continuation of respect and honor for those who have passed and is even used in Olympic Games today to honor the living. Far more than being symbolic, an laurel wreath was given to show command, power, and glory. We use the wreath to honor those brave soldiers who have lived and died in defense of freedom. Captain Thomas O’Neil will call out the name of the first Marine killed in a land engagement, William Shippen, three times, as they did in service in Iraq and Afghanistan and many other places. Though physically gone, their spirit of discipline, courage, and honor transmutes time and space. The spirit of Ezekiel Anderson, George Washington, and the thousands of others who marched, against all odds, to defy the powers that tried to contain them, lives on. Wreaths are physical symbols of the love and respect that are inherent in every person who loves freedom.