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Wreaths Across America stops in Branford 

BRANFORD -- Police cruisers from as far away as Maine escorted roughly a dozen big rigs through Branford Tuesday as part of the Wreaths Across America initiative, designed to remember America’s fallen soldiers during the holiday season.

Many of the folks in the caravan, including Gold Star families, sat in on an hour-long ceremony at Branford High School is one of 12 schools the caravan will stop at en route to Arlington National Cemetery.

Among the Gold Star families in attendance, the parents of Army Captain Andrew Michael Pedersen Keel of Madison, who died in combat in March 2013 in Afghanistan.

"We went and visited Arlington and placed a wreath at Andrews marker with the Blue Star mothers from Connecticut two years ago,” said Andrew’s father, Bob Keiser.

“I promised myself that I would join the caravan from Maine to Arlington,” said the 2006 US Military Academy graduate’s mother, Helen Keiser-Pedersen “As of yet, I’ve only visited with the caravan in Arlington. Maybe someday I will have the strength to go the whole distance.”

Roughly 1,000,000 wreaths will be laid on the graves fallen veterans this Saturday, including 9,200 at the Middletown veterans Cemetery on Bow Lane.

For information on all of the ceremony sites and how you can sponsor a wreath,  log on to