Pilot Wreaths campaign raises $100k to honor veterans

Wendy Hamilton (center), representing Pilot Flying J, meets with Wreaths Across America founders Karen Worcester (left) and Morrill Worcester (right) at the rally before the annual wreath-laying ceremony honoring the nation’s fallen military heroes at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 15, 2012. Pilot Flying J donated $100,000 to support the work of Wreaths Across America.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A $100,000 donation from Pilot Flying J helped honor America's fallen heroes, who gave their lives defending our great land. Wreaths were placed at Arlington National Cemetery and nearly 800 other veteran cemeteries across the country and around the world, the company said on Wednesday.

“We are overwhelmed with the support and patriotic gesture by people from all over the country and by altruistic companies like Pilot Flying J,” said Karen Worcester, executive director of Wreaths Across America.

Pilot Flying J raised the money during its "Cup with a Cause" campaign in October, during which $3 from every limited-edition $4.99 travel mug. The company also gave $2,500 to the Knoxville chapter of the Patriot Guard Riders.

"(W)e were overwhelmed by Pilot Flying J’s $100,000 donation," Worcester said. "By honoring our veterans with the simple gesture of placing a remembrance wreath, Pilot Flying J helped us provide comfort and pride to so many families whose loved ones sacrificed for our country.”

"Cups with a Cause" mugs are still available and as an added bonus anyone who purchases one will also receive a coupon for a free refill.

“This cause is very special to all of us at Pilot Flying J, and it’s special to our customers and our friends in the trucking industry,” said Jimmy Haslam, chairman of Pilot Flying J. “We are proud and humbled to support Wreaths Across America and to help honor our nation’s fallen heroes.”

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