Warrior Tree Honors Those Serving Who Won’t Be Home for Holidays

EDWARDSVILLE, Pa. -- One community in Luzerne County is honoring those men and women who won't be home for the holidays.

Christmas trees can be seen throughout Luzerne County as the holiday season approaches, but one in Edwardville's Veteran's Park is different than all the rest.

"This is the Edwardsville Warrior Tree. it is a community Christmas tree to honor all of the missed holidays that our servicemen and women miss out on at home with their loved ones," explained Karen Declet.

Declet started the Warrior Tree project six years ago with someone special in mind.

"My son was in the Marine Corps. He served four years. He was deployed twice, and he missed two Christmases at home, so that was the inspiration for this. From him, I learned that he's not the only one that doesn't get to come home for Christmas and I just wanted to honor them. I started a little tree at home, and it grew into this."

People in Edwardsville appreciate the tribute to service members.

"It brings memories to them, that way that they know they're always in our hearts while they're serving our country," Samantha Weiss said.

Weiss says her father served in the National Guard. She knows firsthand how hard the holidays can be.

"My dad served in the military and it was hard growing up with him not around for the holidays while he was serving in the wars," Weiss said.

"We hope to be here many more years and our saying is 'till they all come home for Christmas,' so that's what we're hoping for," said Declet.


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