PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Local leaders gathered Monday at the Rhode Island State House for the annual Wreaths Across America State House ceremony.

The annual Wreaths Across America State House ceremonies takes place in all 50 states and Washington D.C.

“We know that we are a better state and a better nation because of the service of your loved ones,” Gov. Dan McKee said. “As I look around the room today, I’m reminded just how thankful I am to be a Rhode Islander and just how thankful I am to be a citizen of the United States, and how thankful I am to preserve the freedom in which we all live.”

Alicia Taylon was one of two seniors from Ponagansett High School who helped organize the ceremony. She told 12 News she was inspired after attending in previous years.

“I first had the privilege of witnessing the ceremony in eighth grade,” Taylon said. “I was overcome with emotion and found great value in the way the ceremony paid tribute to all armed forces during what can be a joyous but also difficult holiday season for many.”