Funeral attendance is limited to ten people.
Updated: April 22, 2020
Effective immediately, per Department of Defense (DoD) guidance, all personnel entering Arlington National Cemetery must have a face covering on their person. Mr. Charles Alexander, Superintendent, Arlington National Cemetery has directed the wear of face coverings while in locations within the cemetery where people cannot maintain a six-foot social distance, specifically in the Administration Building (family rooms, restrooms) and during funeral services. Security personnel will be asking all visitors, family members and employees for proof of face coverings.
Beginning March 30, 2020, all service member or veteran funerals at Arlington National Cemetery will be conducted with military funeral honors only. Military funeral honors with escort have been curtailed in order to comply with Department of Defense (DoD) directives and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance for maximizing social distancing. Families will be notified in advance and will be provided the opportunity to reschedule their service for a later date. Click here for more information.
This change affects funerals for those military members who attained the grade of E-9, CW-4 and CW-5, and O-4 and above, or service members regardless of rank who received the Medal of Honor or who were killed in action. Currently, ANC has no Medal of Honor or killed in action services scheduled.
Families who arrive at Arlington National Cemetery for scheduled funerals will be asked to remain in their cars when they arrive into the designated queuing lanes.
Arlington National Cemetery strongly encourages all funeral attendees, family pass holders, employees/contractors and authorized visitors to wear cloth face coverings, to the extent practical, when they cannot maintain six feet of social distance. Security checkpoints at ANC gates may require the lowering of face covers to verify identification. We appreciate your patience in this matter, as Arlington National Cemetery continues to follow DoD regulations and CDC guidance.
Family members should contact 877-907-8585 for more information on these changes, or if they would like to reschedule a funeral.
For the latest information on the cemetery's operating status, please click here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Are visitors and staff at Arlington National Cemetery wearing face coverings?
A. In accordance with the Secretary of Defense memorandum from April 5, Arlington National Cemetery is following all Department of Defense (DoD) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance to protect the cemetery's families, visitors and employees as we continue to lay our nation's veterans to rest. Effective immediately, ANC highly encourages all funeral attendees, family pass holders, employees, contractors and authorized visitors to wear cloth face coverings, to the extent practical, when they cannot maintain six feet of social distance. Security checkpoints at all ANC gates may require the lowering of face covers to verify identification. ANC employees and contractors will use their best judgment when it comes to color, fit and design of face coverings to maintain the high standards the public has come to know at these hallowed grounds.
Q. Under current conditions, what types of military funeral honors are being rendered at Arlington National Cemetery? How many troops are involved?
Those interred/inurned at Arlington National Cemetery will receive military funeral honors
, requiring a total of 16 personnel. These personnel will perform their mission with the appropriate level of social distancing. The elements of military funeral honors include:
• Casket team (body bearers/pallbearers, usually six service members)
• Firing party (seven service members)
• A bugler (one bandsman)
• Folding and presentation of the U.S. flag (same personnel from casket team)
Q. Have there been any changes to the process of scheduling a funeral at Arlington National Cemetery?
No. Families who have lost a loved one must contact the ANC Call Center at 877-907-8585 to begin the scheduling process. The call center will provide instructions for scheduling a funeral.
Q. Can a family reschedule, postpone or cancel a funeral?
Yes, families should call 877-907-8585 to make those arrangements.
Q. Do families need to start the scheduling process over again if their funeral is rescheduled or postponed?
No. ANC will reschedule your loved one's service upon coordination with the Call Center.
Q. When family members and funeral guests come to Arlington National Cemetery, what should they do?
All funeral attendees or family pass holders must follow the directions of security personnel and proceed to the queuing lanes. The primary next or kin (PNOK) or person authorized to direct disposition (PADD) should enter the family room in the Administration Building to complete the required documentation and then return to their vehicle. All other personnel may use the public restrooms, but should immediately return to their vehicles. We are recommending limiting social interaction and conducting the recommended social distancing. Additional directions will be provided once funeral attendees arrive in the queuing lanes.
Q. Are chapel services being affected?
At this time, Memorial Chapel on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall continues to conduct funeral services. For compliance with CDC and DoD guidance against large gatherings of people, Arlington National Cemetery kindly requests that families consider limiting funeral attendance, including attendance at chapel services, during this unique time. Please visit https://home.army.mil/jbmhh/
for installation access procedures.
Q. Will the Arlington Ladies still be attending funerals?
The Arlington Ladies
are volunteers who provide unwavering support to service members and veterans interred each day at Arlington National Cemetery. Effective Monday, March 23, 2020, the Arlington Ladies will pause their in-person funeral presence at ANC to render condolences to families. The Arlington Ladies will still provide condolence cards to be given to the primary next of kin (PNOK) by the Cemetery Representative or to be mailed as appropriate. This decision was made during these extraordinary times to ensure all measures are taken to protect our service members, workforce and families.
Q. With the curtailment of honors, will the caisson or caparisoned horse be a part of the funeral?
No. The military funeral honors with escort in which the caisson and/or caparison horse is used (for Army and USMC colonels and above) are being curtailed until further notice.
Q. When will honors go back to normal levels?
To be determined. ANC and the military service branches are continually assessing the situation. When conditions allow us to return to normal operations, we will announce any changes this website and social media.
Q. When will Arlington National Cemetery reopen to the public, and how will the public be informed?
ANC will notify the public as we continue to assess the situation and will keep you informed as we update our status based on changing conditions. We will regularly update the public to all status changes via a banner on this website, push notification on the ANC Explorer app and all social media platforms.
Q. Are physical security procedures still in place?
Yes. All visitors — to include funeral attendees and family pass holders — must show their government issues ID card or a passport. Physical screenings remain as well.
The primary mission of Arlington National Cemetery is to function as the nation's premier military cemetery and shrine, honoring those men and women who served in the armed forces. The cemetery remains active, with funeral services Monday through Saturday. We conduct 27 to 30 services each weekday, and six to eight services on Saturdays.
Funeral services are held:
Monday through Friday, except federal holidays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Saturday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., for placements and services for cremated remains that do not require
or military chaplain support. Services are not scheduled on Saturdays that precede a federal holiday on Monday.
Family members and others attending a service should arrive at the cemetery approximately 45 minutes prior to the scheduled service time. Families will not be allowed entry into the cemetery earlier than one hour prior to the scheduled service.
To request or coordinate funeral services, please call 1-877-907-8585.
Frequently Asked Questions