PILOT FLYING J DONATES $100,000 TO HONOR U.S. MILITARY VETERANS THROUGH WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

December 26, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dec. 26, 2012

For more information,
Contact: Lauren Christ
Moxley Carmichael
(865) 544-0088

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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.

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.

This holiday season, hundreds of thousands of wreaths were placed on the tombstones and memorials of the nation’s fallen heroes thanks to Wreaths Across America (WAA). With the help of professional drivers and customers across the nation, Pilot Flying J was proud to contribute $100,000 to the WAA campaign to honor the men and women who gave their lives to defend our country.

In October, the company announced its “Cup with a Cause” campaign, which donated $3 from every $4.99, limited-edition travel mug purchased by customers at Pilot Travel Center or Flying J Travel Plaza locations across the U.S. In December, Pilot Flying J donated $100,000 to WAA to assist the non-profit organization in coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery and nearly 800 additional veteran cemeteries and memorials across the country and overseas.

Pilot Flying J donated an additional $2,500 to the local chapter of the Patriot Guard Riders in the company’s hometown of Knoxville, Tenn., to support the WAA efforts locally.

“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. “We’ve been fortunate to have great relationships within the trucking industry and know the generous nature of the drivers and others in the industry, so it was no surprise to us that Pilot Flying J and its customers wanted to get involved. But we were overwhelmed by Pilot Flying J’s $100,000 donation. 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.”

WAA and the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) earlier in 2012 announced a partnership through which TCA helped dispatch drivers and coordinate logistics of wreath delivery across the country.

Thousands of wreaths adorn the tombstones of the nation's fallen heroes at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., following the annual Wreaths Across America (WAA) wreath-laying ceremony on Dec. 15, 2012. WAA coordinates ceremonies at nearly 800 veteran cemeteries and memorials across the country and overseas to honor U.S. veterans.

Thousands of wreaths adorn the tombstones of the nation’s fallen heroes at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., following the annual Wreaths Across America (WAA) wreath-laying ceremony on Dec. 15, 2012. WAA coordinates ceremonies at nearly 800 veteran cemeteries and memorials across the country and overseas to honor U.S. veterans.

“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.”

The WAA program started in 1992 and has grown ever since to include more volunteers, more locations and more wreaths. This December, a total of more than 420,000 wreaths were placed to honor U.S. veterans, including 110,662 wreaths placed on headstones at Arlington National Cemetery.

Wendy Hamilton, senior national account marketing manager for Pilot Flying J, attended the WAA annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington on Dec. 15.

“We arrived at Arlington with the convoy of semi-trailer trucks carrying thousands of wreaths, and thousands of people had lined the streets welcoming the volunteers,” Hamilton said. “It was a humbling and inspiring display of respect and gratitude for our nation’s military heroes and for their families. Not only during the holidays but year round, we will take to heart the organization’s mission to ‘Remember, Honor, Teach.'”

“Cup with a Cause” mugs are still available for purchase. As a token of appreciation for customers who support the “Cup with a Cause” campaign, each travel mug includes a coupon for a free refill. Customers can redeem the coupon for any premium coffee or cappuccino selection.

For more information about Wreaths Across America, please visit www.WreathsAcrossAmerica.org. To find a Pilot Flying J location nearest you to purchase your “Cup with a Cause” mug, visit www.pilotflyingj.com or download the Pilot Flying J app to your smartphone.

About Pilot Flying J

Pilot Flying J is committed to making life better for America’s drivers. Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, Pilot Flying J has over 650 retail locations and is the largest operator of travel centers and travel plazas in North America. It is ranked by Forbes as the 6th largest private company in America. The Pilot Flying J network provides customers with access to over 60,000 parking spaces for trucks, over 4,400 showers and over 4,000 diesel lanes, of which over 2,700 offer DEF at the pump. Pilot Flying J subsidiary Maxum Petroleum is one of the largest independent energy logistics companies in North America, selling and distributing over 1.3 billion gallons of refined petroleum products and serving over 15,000 customers. Together, Pilot Flying J and Maxum Petroleum employ over 25,000 people and generate sales of 9 billion gallons of petroleum annually. Visit www.pilotflyingj.com for more information.

About Wreaths Across America

Wreaths Across America is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded to continue and expand the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery begun by Maine businessman, Morrill Worcester, in 1992. The organization’s mission, Remember, Honor, Teach, is carried out in part each year by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies in December at Arlington, as well as hundreds of veterans’ cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and beyond. For more information, to donate or to sign up to volunteer, please visit¬†www.WreathsAcrossAmerica.org.