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Keeping the effort going

Many around Lawrence County were saddened to learn of the passing of Juanita Southers, who died on Saturday.

An active member of her community, Southers was a member of Pine Street United Methodist Church and Resurrection Hope United Methodist Church and was employed by the Central Christian Church Daycare Center and the Lawrence County Board of Elections.

But to those of us at The Tribune, we knew her best as a person committed each year to honoring the veterans buried at Woodland Cemetery.

Southers, along with Linda Dalton, worked as the local coordinators for Wreaths Across America, an effort to place wreaths on veterans’ graves nationwide.

In this last year, before Southers and Dalton turned duties over to sisters Laura Brown and Sally Ingles, the group placed 719 wreaths at the cemetery, the highest they have purchased yet.

Funding for the project came from local businesses and individuals and Southers was key to promoting it and getting support.

She and Dalton got the idea in 2012 after visiting Southers’ daughter in Washington D.C. and taking part in Wreaths Across America at Arlington National Ceremony.

They were so moved, they decided to bring the project to Lawrence County.

As Southers is laid to rest this week in the cemetery she was so devoted to, we hope that everyone will consider throwing their support toward keeping Wreaths across America going strong in Lawrence County.

Donations can be sent to Lawrence County Wreaths Across America, in care of Citizens United Bank, 221 Railroad St., Ironton, OH 45638.