NEWPORT, RI… Wreaths Across America (WAA) recently recognized Arpin Van Lines’ David Arpin as the fourth recipient of the organization’s annual James Prout/WAA Spirit of Giving Award. Sarah and Rob Worcester, both members of the WAA founding family and logistics team, presented Arpin with the award at the 34th Annual Arpin Agent Convention, a three-day gathering taking place in Newport.
The James Prout/WAA Spirit of Giving Award is named in memory of James Prout, owner of Blue Bird Ranch Trucking of Jonesboro, Maine – WAA’s home state. Prout was the first person to volunteer to haul wreaths for WAA when the program was in its infancy. The award is given annually to a deserving professional truck driver, company or organization that has supported charitable causes in a way that will affect generations to come.
“My father, Paul Arpin, was an Army Veteran in World War II and a survivor of the Invasion of Normandy, and following the war, he returned home to run Arpin Van Lines until he was 86 years old. When presented with the opportunity to support Wreaths Across America by one of my drivers, it was a no-brainer,” Arpin said. “Receiving this award is an honor and only further solidifies my support for the organization and appreciation for all of the trucking industry volunteers who make it possible each year.”
Arpin is the President of Arpin Van Lines and a fourth-generation owner of the company. For the past six years, Arpin and his drivers, employees and agents have supported the mission to Remember, Honor, Teach by donating time and transportation services leading up to and on National Wreaths Across America Day each December. Last year, Arpin Van Lines hauled 26 tractor-trailer loads of veterans’ wreaths to participating cemeteries across the country.
“The moving industry is a small niche in the larger trucking community, and we’re proud to have transported about 10 percent of Wreaths Across America’s veterans’ wreaths last year,” said Don Queeney, a long-time Wreaths Across America volunteer and agent for Arpin Van Lines. “It is people like David and his influence on our industry who made that happen, and he deserves all the credit in the world for continuing to support our veterans and this mission.”
The trucking industry is a vital group when it comes to helping WAA achieve its goal of honoring fallen soldiers each year. In addition to transporting wreaths, Arpin Van Lines’ charity, Arpin Strong, supports Wreaths Across America fundraising efforts for Exeter National Cemetery in Rhode Island and other local veterans’ and non-veterans’ nonprofit organizations.
“Without the trucking community and their generous donations of time and services, our mission simply would not be possible,” Rob Worcester explained. “We are touched and honored when people like David allow and encourage their employees to use company time and resources to Remember, Honor, Teach across the country.”
Wreaths Across America is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit 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 at more than 1,400 veterans’ cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and overseas. For more information, please visit www.wreathsacrossamerica.org.
Arpin Award 1 – Rob Worcester (left) presents David Arpin with Wreaths Across America’s James Prout/Spirit of Giving Award
Arpin Award 2 – Rob Worcester (left, inset), of Wreaths Across America, and David Arpin, President of Arpin Van Lines
Arpin Award 3 – David Arpin’s James Prout/Spirit of Giving Award