Cemetery leadership encourages the public and stakeholders to be part of eligibility discussion
ARLINGTON, VA - Arlington National Cemetery (ANC) launched a second survey and encourages the public and its various stakeholders to continue to share their thoughts on an important issue - the future of Arlington National Cemetery. The survey can be accessed on the cemetery’s website at: www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/eligibility-survey.
"Your opinion matters - not only to us, but to our military and civilian leaders as they face a difficult future for our hallowed national shrine," said Executive Director of Army National Military Cemeteries Karen Durham-Aguilera.
The cemetery is at a critical crossroads in its history. In approximately 23 years, Arlington National Cemetery will run out of space and no longer be an active cemetery. The Army has been asked by Congress to consider what might be done to preserve ANC as an active military cemetery well into the future, or for generations to come.
There are only two basic factors that affect the life of ANC - available land and the rate at which burials are requested. ANC's location more than four miles inside of the Capital Beltway limits the amount of expansion available to only a few small parcels of land, and at ANC’s current rate of services, each acre will only extend the life of the cemetery by three months.
“We continue our promise to publicly discuss this challenge in order to make the correct decision, but we cannot expand our way out of this problem,” said Arlington National Cemetery Superintendent Katharine Kelley.
In July 2017, the cemetery conducted a survey in partnership with several military and veteran organizations. The more than 28,000 respondents shared that keeping ANC open well into the future is paramount. They also communicated that - if eligibility at ANC is limited - those killed in action, Medal of Honor and other high award recipients, former POWs, and those active duty service members who die on operational missions should have a place at ANC. Click here to view the results of the first survey.
After analyzing the results of first survey, cemetery leadership determined there was a need for further refinement. With the assistance of the Advisory Committee on Arlington National Cemetery and military and Veteran Service Organizations (VSO), they developed a second survey, which is now available on the cemetery’s website.
Arlington National Cemetery invites everyone to take the survey and continue the robust and candid national dialogue.