Fort Mitchell Cemetery only site in region for new veterans burials

benw@ledger-enquirer.comFebruary 22, 2013 

The Fort Mitchell National Cemetery is the only site in the region still accepting new burials for area veterans and their families.

The cemetery located off Highway 165 in Fort Mitchell, Ala., gained that distinction in July 2012 when the Main Post Cemetery at Fort Benning stopped taking new, in ground burials, said Elsie Jackson, a post public affairs spokeswoman.

“There is no space,” Jackson said.

With only 8.6 acres, the 91-year-old cemetery off Benning Boulevard has 9,913 people buried there, including Medal of Honor recipient Army Col. Robert B. Nett and three other war heroes. It also is the final resting place for Julia Moore, the wife of retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore who co-wrote “We Were Soldiers Once..and Young, ” a book about the battle of Ia Drang Valley in Vietnam in 1965.

Jackson said there is a place for Moore because family members and spouses are stacked in the same plot.

Although space for new plots is filled on post, Jackson said there’s still room for more than 800 cremations if there is a request.

Limited space at Fort Benning hasn’t increased burials at Fort Mitchell but more room is available at the 316 acre site, said James P. Sanders, director of the cemetery for the Department of Veteran Affairs.

“We have plenty of space,” Sanders said. “We will be burying 100 plus years from now. As far as space, that is no problem for us.”

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