Join Our Butterfly Tree
Our Memorial Has Found A Home
The VFW Headquarters in Lexington, South Carolina is now serving as home for the National Children's Butterfly Tree Memorial. It was displayed for the first time at its new location on January 14, at the South Carolina State meeting for all Commanders. Our tree now contains over 6,000 butterflies, one for each soldier lost and will continue to have more butterflies added if necessary.
Cherie Reid, founder of Kids Thank A Veteran, South Carolina State Commander William Campbell, President of the South Carolina Ladies Auxiliary Marianne Larson
Governor Nikki Haley requested that the Butterfly Tree Memorial be on display for the Open House at the Governor's Mansion for the month of December. The tree was on view for thousands of visitors at that time. With the help of Lowes and past military, our memorial was proudly displayed.
Our tree is at Arlington National Cemetery!
The Children's National Butterfly Tree Memorial is now at Arlington National Cemetery! It was delivered on June 30th and is on display in the Visitors Center. The eleven foot, 300+ pound tree was set up with the help of agents from the Washington DC and New York offices of the FBI, a former member of the US Army National Guard and Lowe's. Also working on the tree were Jeff Reid, who built the tree, and Cherie Reid, Director of Kids Thank a Veteran.
This "living memorial" now has almost 5,500 red, white and blue butterflies and additional butterflies will be added as needed.
Thanks so much to the children, educators and everyone who helped create this tribute. This project is a wonderful tribute to those soldiers who have given the ultimate sacrifice.
The Butterfly Tree was dedicated on December 8th, 2009, in Howell, New Jersey,
two years after the national project was started by "Kids Thank a Veteran".
At the dedication the tree had 5,297 butterflies, each with the name, rank
and age of a fallen soldier from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring
The Butterfly Tree Dedication
Attending were students, parents, teachers, Gold Star Moms who have lost children in the war, veterans, active military and the general public. We were proud to have our Honor Guard from the United States Military Academy Prep School. Also in attendance were speaker Captain Ravia from Fort Monmouth, speaker Judi Tapper, President of the New Jersey Gold Star Moms and speaker Senator Robert Singer. Senator Singer presented us with a New Jersey State Resolution from the State Senate and Legislative offices which now recognize the Butterfly Tree as a memorial.
After the presentation of "Our Heroes", Gold Star Moms were presented with a butterfly and the children thanked every veteran and active member of the military during a song tribute. When the ceremony concluded with Taps, everyone was invited to view the tree and "Memory Books" which
were on display. These books contained the names of every fallen soldier, their
state, picture, age and rank. Also on display were picture boards containing
photos of the children from 31 states who made butterflies and information
packets with the names of each state and school or organization that participated.
Every person attending was given a United States flag pin.
My sincere thanks to everyone who made this one of a kind memorial possible.
It was truly an act of compassion and gratitude for those who gave their
lives to serve our country.
Our tree at Arlington National Cemetery
Our set-up crew
"Memory Books" on display with the names, pictures and hometowns of each soldier lost
Ceremony Pictures by Patrick Rumaker, Editor, NJEA Reporter Communications
National Butterfly Tree Memorial
Cherie Reid, Director of Kids Thank a Veteran
Senator Singer presenting the New Jersey State Resolution
Soldier from Fort Monmouth
SColor Guard, US Military Academy Prep School
Speaker, Captai Ravia Fort Monmouth
Judi Tapper, President of the NJ Gold Star Moms
Children thanking veterans
Children preparing for presentation
--Participating Schools 1 -- PDF Document--
--Participating Schools 2 -- PDF Document--
-------- Added 3/12/2012 ---------
Meadowlark Elementary School, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Boys and girls from Silver Bay Elementary School in Toms River, NJ
display their butterfly creations. Mrs. Aufiero's Class.
Discovery Middle School, Granger, Indiana
South Toms River Elementary School, South Toms River, NJ
Howell South Middle School, Howell, NJ
Toms River Intermediate South, Toms River, NJ
Oak Knoll School, Summit, NJ
George H. Potter School, Dartmouth, Massachusetts
Maple Valley Elementary School, Sandusky, Michigan
Edinburg Elementary School, Edinburg, IL
Jefferson Elementary School, Dixon, IL
Wellsville Elementary School, Wellsville, NY
Fort Washington Elementary, Fort Washington, PA
Winter Street Elementary, Hagerstown, MD
Den 1 -- Pack 233 -- Maine
Girl Scouts Heart of the Hudson
Funkstown School for Early Child Development, Funkstown, MD
Mount Tabor Church Boot Camp, Lebanon, Indiana
Skano Elementary School, Clifton Park New York
Wisconsin Veterans Museum, Madison, Wisconsin
Den Pack 692, Blue Springs, Missouri
Lucy Franklin Elementary School, Blue Springs, Missouri
Tyler, age 5, and Alyssa, age 3, Oakland, NJ
Clarion Free Library, Clarion, Pennsylvania
Brownie Girl Scout Troop # 2203, Circle, Montana
Sabater School, Vineland, NJ-Mrs. Walsh 2nd Grade
Sabater School, Vineland, NJ-Mrs. McLoone 3rd Grade
Sabater School, Vineland, NJ-Mr. McConnell 5th Grade
Sabater School, Vineland, NJ-Miss Rochetti 1st Grade
Sabater School, Vineland, NJ-Mrs Napier 1st Grade
Girl Scout Daisy Troop 1256 from Latham, New York
Girl Scout Troop 2094, Winter Park, Florida
Bridlewood Elementary School in Flower Mound, Texas
Skano Elementary School, Clifton Park, New York
Bayard Elementary--Bayard, New Mexico
JFK Intermediate, Deer Park, New York
Brownie Troop 1601, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ