LECANTO, Fla. - Diana Makovitch's home in Lecanto is filled with gnomes. So many gnomes, she's nicknamed her home ‘gnomeville.’
They're dressed in all sorts of outfits, from sports teams to superheroes. There’s even a Harley Davidson-themed gnome.
She's made so many gnomes, she's used about 170 pounds of rice to fill their sack bodies.
Each one is named after a real-life veteran.
"I give the whole name, I give the date they were born and the date they passed away on a little business card and attached to every gnome," Makovitch explained.
Makovitch is a volunteer with Wreaths Across America. Each gnome she sells raises money to place wreaths at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell.
She gets emotional when talking about what she does.
"My father was a vet, my first husband was a vet, my last husband was a vet and my current husband is a vet. I am very, very passionate about veterans," she said with tears in her eyes.
Makovitch and Randy Lewer, a veteran himself and a liaison for the cemetery, have a goal. They want 50,000 wreaths -- enough to cover half the graves at Bushnell.
"They say a veteran dies twice: Once, the physical being and the second time when their name isn't said anymore. And that's one of the missions of Wreaths Across America is to always say these veterans’ names," Lewer offered.
He's seen what something as simple as a wreath can do.
"You'll get a family to come out to remember grandpa or something like that, they'll come to cemetery, place a wreath, take a lawn chair, sit with the grandparents or dad; it's really touching, it really is."
Even in times with so much political division, Lewer says this is something every American can get behind.
"We can unite behind something that we all feel strongly about and that's remembering our veterans and the sacrifices they made for us."
December 18 is National Wreaths Across America Day. Makovitch hopes to sell enough gnomes to get those 50,000 wreaths.
"My goal is to fill Bushnell Cemetery with wreaths. That's my goal," she added.
This Saturday, April 24, the Gnomes Force will be at Harley-Davidson of New Port Richey from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., raffling off a Harley gnome.