W-F student earns service award
Recognized for cemetery wreaths program
By Angie Landsverk
Chloe Heisler has been honored with a President’s Volunteer Service Award.
The award recognizes middle school and high school students across the country for their volunteer service.
The Weyauwega-Fremont High School student received the recognition for raising funds for wreaths at the Central Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery.
“I was shocked. I was so happy, not necessarily for myself, but that the Wreaths Across America program was out there finally,” Heisler said of the recognition.
The mission of Wreaths Across America is to remember, honor and teach.
Coordinating wreath laying ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery and at veterans cemeteries throughout the country is one way it does this.
Each December, a ceremony and wreath laying takes place at Veterans Memorial Cemetery, in King.
Heisler became interested in the effort because several of her family members are veterans.
For the last two years, she helped raise money for the program and plans to continue doing this.
Heisler also helped place flags by graves in the cemetery for Memorial Day.
Jeremy Schroeder, principal of W-F’s middle and high schools, nominated Heisler for the award.
“Chloe is a very positive and bright young lady that is willing to put others first and help others at all times. She is very outgoing and active both in and out of school,” he said. “When you meet Chloe, she has a welcoming and cheery smile. She is a role model for others to follow.”
Volunteer activities were judged on criteria that included personal initiative, creativity, effort, impact and personal growth.
“I found my love and appreciation for every single veteran out there. I gained a sense of responsibility. I always knew that freedom wasn’t free, and that every veteran put their life on the line for us,” Heisler said.
Not enough funds were raised last year to place a wreath on every grave in the cemetery, and she hopes this year will be better.
Those who want to donate toward 2018’s effort may send checks (payable to Wreaths Across America) to Heisler at E2717 Christmas Tree Lane, Waupaca, WI 54981.
“It brings me so much joy knowing families get to say thank you to their loved ones again,” she said.
Heisler appreciates those who donated the past few years.
“It means so much. I got letters with some of the donations. The letters explained if they were related to someone in the Army. They all told me a little about themselves,” she said. “It made me so happy knowing their loved ones would be honored.”
The award she received was granted by the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program.
It was sponsored by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary Principals.
In addition to this award, Heisler also received a “National Good Deeds Award” related to her work with Wreaths Across America, as well as a plaque.