Memorial Day Flowers-It's Personal

I spent the morning in the hotel lobby of the Marriott Gateway assisting in the distribution of bouquets donated by CalFlowers' member Ocean View Flowers.  It was moving to watch the families, couples - young and old - and young women remembering their lost soldiers.  There were some tearful moments, especially as the family members realized that the bouquets offered to them were a gift and the roses that will be placed on more than 100,000 grave sites over the next two days were all donated by growers!  We received many hugs with requests to pass along their deep and abiding gratitude for even thinking of them - very touching.  Hard not to tear up!

Ramiro and Michael at 2015 Memorial Day FlowersWhat struck me about today was that for so many Americans this weekend is very personal.  I also learned that this is very personal for Ramiro Peñaherrera, founder of Memorial Day Flowers and an American/Ecuadorian flower farmer.  I am honored and pleased to call Ramiro a friend – a new friend, having met through this year's event.  Here we are with the stand of Ocean View bouquets in between meeting, greeting and passing out flowers this morning.

 Here's how it's personal for Ramiro... he has five members of his family buried at Arlington National Cemetery.  He's very proud of his American heritage.  He understands that flowers make a difference and can be effective in carrying messages that sooth, heal and brighten spirits.  He showed me the Arlington National Cemetery pass, one of two, issued to his family.  It was issued in 1953.

ANC pass

I'm also proud to be representing CalFlowers and that they decided to be a sponsor for this year's Memorial Day Flower event.

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