Arlington National Cemetery

Arlington National Cemetery Welcome to Arlington National Cemetery’s official page on Facebook, a place to honor and remember our nation’s service members, veterans and their families.
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For more information, please visit https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil. Welcome to the Arlington National Cemetery’s official page, a place to learn more about the cemetery, and tell us what you think. If you're looking for more information about Arlington National Cemetery, visit our website at www.arlingtoncemetery.mil. You can find information on our website about eligibility (https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Funerals/Scheduling-a-Funeral/Establishing-Eligibility), scheduling a funeral (https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Funerals/Scheduling-a-Funeral), or planning your visit (https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Explore) to our nation’s most hallowed grounds. If you are looking for information on joining the #ArmyTeam, visit www.goarmy.com. Open civil service jobs are posted at www.usajobs.gov. If you have a question about Arlington National Cemetery, email us at [email protected]. This is not a forum to meet people; users who post comments asking for likes, friends or asking others to add them will have their posts deleted and may be banned from the page. While this is an open forum, it's also a family friendly one, so please keep your comments and timeline posts clean. In addition to keeping it family friendly, we ask that you follow our posting guidelines here. If you don't comply, your comment will be removed, and repeat offenders may be banned at any time. -We do not allow graphic, obscene, explicit or racial comments or submissions nor do we allow comments that are abusive, hateful or intended to defame anyone or any organization. -We do not allow solicitations or advertisements. This includes promotion or endorsement of any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. Similarly, we do not allow attempts to defame or defraud any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. -We do not allow comments that suggest or encourage illegal activity. -We do not allow comments that are completely off-topic to the original post. -You participate at your own risk, taking personal responsibility for your comments, your username and any information provided. The appearance of external links on this page does not constitute official endorsement on behalf of the U.S. Army or Department of Defense. For more information visit the DoD Social Media user agreement at: http://www.defense.gov/socialmedia/user-agreement.aspx.

Operating as usual

This afternoon, the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) Caisson Platoon; soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 3d U....
10/27/2020

This afternoon, the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) Caisson Platoon; soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard); and the U.S. Army Band, “Pershing’s Own;” conducted modified military funeral honors with funeral escort for U.S. Army Special Forces Staff Sgt. Ronald J. Shurer II in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Shurer was awarded the Medal of Honor October 1, 2018, for his actions as a Green Beret medic with 3rd Special Forces Group during the Battle of Shok Valley in northeastern Afghanistan April 6, 2008. He was part of a team sent to capture or kill several high-value members of the Hezb-e Islami al Gulbadin militant group.

Shurer received his bachelor’s degree in business economics from Washington State University where he stayed on to work towards a master’s degree. However, after the Sept. 11th attacks happened, Shurer (inspired by his parents who were both in the Air Force) joined the Army on Nov. 21, 2002.

Two years after enlisting, Shurer began Special Forces training to become a Green Beret. He passed the qualification course in June 2006 and was assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group.
Shurer deployed to Afghanistan from August 2006 to March 2007, then again from October 2007 to May 2008. It was during that second deployment that he earned his Medal of Honor.

Shurer passed away May 14, 2020, at the age of 41. He is survived by his wife and two sons.

U.S. Army Photos by Elizabeth Fraser

More photos from the service can be found here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/arlingtonnatl/albums/72157716645270472

Beautiful fall colors are seen on this Sugar Maple in Section 34 at Arlington National Cemetery. U.S. Army photo by Kell...
10/26/2020

Beautiful fall colors are seen on this Sugar Maple in Section 34 at Arlington National Cemetery.

U.S. Army photo by Kelly Wilson.

Fog rolls across these hallowed grounds at Section 54 of Arlington National Cemetery.
10/25/2020

Fog rolls across these hallowed grounds at Section 54 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Yesterday, Modified Funeral Honors with Funeral Escort were conducted for U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Pvt. 1st Class Charl...
10/24/2020

Yesterday, Modified Funeral Honors with Funeral Escort were conducted for U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Pvt. 1st Class Charles Miller in Section 60 at Arlington National Cemetery. Miller was killed in the Tarawa Atoll during World War II at age 19.

Excerpt from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) press release:

In November 1943, Miller was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, while the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Miller died on the third day of battle, Nov. 22, 1943. He was reported to have been buried in Row D of the East Division Cemetery, later renamed Cemetery 33.

In 1946, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company centralized all of the American remains found on Tarawa at Lone Palm Cemetery for later repatriation. However, almost half of the known casualties were never found. No recovered remains could be associated with Miller, and in October 1949, a Board of Review declared him “non-recoverable.”

In 2009, a nonprofit organization discovered a burial site on Betio Island believed to be Cemetery 33, which has been the site of numerous excavations ever since. In March 2019, excavations west of Cemetery 33 revealed a previously undiscovered burial site that has since been identified as Row D. The remains recovered at this site were transferred to the DPAA Laboratory at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. Miller’s remains were officially identified for on May 19, 2020.

(U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser)

The Battle of Leyte Gulf was three naval engagements ranging around the Philippine Islands from October 23 to 26, 1944. ...
10/23/2020

The Battle of Leyte Gulf was three naval engagements ranging around the Philippine Islands from October 23 to 26, 1944. Two U.S. Navy admirals, both buried at Arlington National Cemetery, directed the naval Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval engagement of World War II, and, possibly, in all military history. Admiral William “Bull” Halsey (Section 2, Grave 1184), commanded the American Third Fleet, while Admiral Thomas Kinkaid (Section 5, Grave 82), commanded the Seventh Fleet.

Kinkaid was in charge of landing U.S. Army forces under General Douglas MacArthur on the island of Leyte, fulfilling his pledge to return to the Philippines. Halsey had two missions: Protect Kinkaid’s landing craft with his large aircraft carriers, and seek out a decisive engagement with the Japanese fleet.

On the morning of October 20, Kinkaid began landing troops at Leyte. For three days, the Americans pushed inland under the protection Kinkaid’s guns and Halsey’s carrier-based aircraft. But on October 23, the Japanese launched their three-pronged attack, comprised of a Center, Southern, and Northern force. As the Center Force wound its way through islands north of Leyte, the Southern Force did the same south of Leyte. To draw off Halsey’s carriers, a Northern Force headed into the Philippine Sea, northwest of Leyte.

American submarines and PT boats from Kinkaid’s Seventh fleet, along with carrier-based aircraft from Halsey’s Third Fleet harassed and sank Japanese battleships and destroyers of both the Center and Southern forces as they made their way through the islands.

On the night of October 24, the Southern Force reached the Surigato Straight, where it encountered Rear Admiral Jesse A. Oldendorf’s naval force. Oldendorf sent destroyers racing down both sides of the enemy fleet, unleashing torpedoes, and sinking two Japanese destroyers and one battleship while also damaging a destroyer and battleship. As the Japanese continued their advance, Oldendorf’s battleships crossed in front of the enemy fleet, bearing all their guns on the Japanese, who could only fire their bow guns—a naval maneuver called “Crossing the T”—which Oldendorf used to devastating effect. When the firing stopped, only two Japanese ships remained to make a hasty retreat.

The next day, the Center Force reached Leyte Gulf through the San Bernardino Straight, but Rear Admiral Clifton Sprague’s small force of aircraft from six escort carriers and seven destroyers and destroyer-escorts attacked. The aircraft fought a delaying action, while the destroyers and destroyer-escorts made near suicidal runs at the Japanese. Although the Americans lost one carrier and three escorts without sinking any enemy ships, the Japanese commander, stunned at the ferocity of the American attack, retreated.

During the fighting off Leyte, Kinkaid repeatedly radioed Halsey, requesting support, but Halsey had taken off north with his carriers to attack the decoy Northern Force. His 180-plane raid on the force sank all four of the force’s aircraft carriers. Although Halsey was criticized for leaving the landing forces, the Battle of Leyte Gulf proved decisive for the American Navy.

The Japanese Imperial Navy had lost four irreplaceable aircraft carriers, three battleships, ten cruisers, and eleven destroyers, also suffering 12,500 casualties. American losses were light: one light aircraft carrier, two escort carriers, two destroyers, and one destroyer escort, with less than 3,000 casualties. The battle ended the Japanese Navy’s ability influence the course of the rest of the war.

(U.S. Navy photo of the USS West Virginia (BB-48) fires on a Japanese naval force during the Battle of Surigato Straight on the night of October 24, 1944, one of the three battles that made up the Battle of Leyte Gulf.)

Earlier today, the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard, U.S. Navy Ceremonial Band, and the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Gua...
10/22/2020

Earlier today, the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard, U.S. Navy Ceremonial Band, and the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) Caisson Platoon conducted modified military funeral honors with funeral escort for U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. David Hill in Section 75 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Hill received his Navy commission in 2005 after graduating from the University of Virginia. He arrived for his most recent tour in June 2018 where he worked as a pathology resident at the Naval Media Center San Diego.

#HonorThem

Today, the U.S. Air Force Honor Guards and The U.S. Air Force Band conduct modified military funeral honors for U.S. Air...
10/20/2020

Today, the U.S. Air Force Honor Guards and The U.S. Air Force Band conduct modified military funeral honors for U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alvin Mack in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery.

U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser.

#OnThisDay in 1944, the U.S. Navy defeated the Japanese Imperial Navy at the Battle of Leyte Gulf, considered the larges...
10/19/2020

#OnThisDay in 1944, the U.S. Navy defeated the Japanese Imperial Navy at the Battle of Leyte Gulf, considered the largest naval battle in World War II and, possibly, world history. Two American admirals who helped lead the U.S. Navy to victory are buried at Arlington National Cemetery: Thomas Kinkaid (left) and William “Bull” Halsey (right). To learn more about notable Navy gravesites at Arlington National Cemetery, see our recent online feature for the Navy’s 245th birthday: https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/explore/notable-graves/us-navy

#TodayIRemember U.S. Marine Corps Col. Gregory "Pappy" Boyington who is laid to rest in Section 7A at Arlington National...
10/17/2020

#TodayIRemember U.S. Marine Corps Col. Gregory "Pappy" Boyington who is laid to rest in Section 7A at Arlington National Cemetery. A World War II fighter ace and Medal of Honor recipient, Col. "Pappy" Boyington (1912-1988) shot down a total of 28 Japanese aircraft during his wartime service. Initially in Army ROTC, he joined the Marine Corps in 1935. In August 1941, however, he resigned his Marine commission in order to join the Flying Tigers (1st American Volunteer Group), organized by Gen. Claire Chennault to assist the Chinese Air Force. Boyington rejoined the Marines in 1942 and commanded the "Black Sheep" squadron (Marine Fighting Squadron 214) in the South Pacific. On January 3, 1944, he was shot down, captured and then held in a Japanese prison camp for 20 months. Boyington's 1958 memoir, "Baa Baa Black Sheep," inspired the 1970s television series of the same name.

Medal of Honor citation:
"For extraordinary heroism and valiant devotion to duty as commanding officer of Marine Fighting Squadron 214 in action against enemy Japanese forces in the Central Solomons area from 12 September 1943 to 3 January 1944. Consistently outnumbered throughout successive hazardous flights over heavily defended hostile territory, Maj. Boyington struck at the enemy with daring and courageous persistence, leading his squadron into combat with devastating results to Japanese shipping, shore installations, and aerial forces. Resolute in his efforts to inflict crippling damage on the enemy, Maj. Boyington led a formation of 24 fighters over Kahili on 17 October and, persistently circling the airdrome where 60 hostile aircraft were grounded, boldly challenged the Japanese to send up planes. Under his brilliant command, our fighters shot down 20 enemy craft in the ensuing action without the loss of a single ship. A superb airman and determined fighter against overwhelming odds, Maj. Boyington personally destroyed 26 of the many Japanese planes shot down by his squadron and, by his forceful leadership, developed the combat readiness in his command which was a distinctive factor in the Allied aerial achievements in this vitally strategic area."

In Section 46 of Arlington National Cemetery, there stands a simple monument engraved with sixteen names. Beneath this u...
10/16/2020

In Section 46 of Arlington National Cemetery, there stands a simple monument engraved with sixteen names. Beneath this unassuming stone marker lie two unknown sailors from the Civil War ironclad ship, Monitor—which sank in a gale off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina on New Year’s Eve, 1862. The two unknown sailors’ journey from the Monitor wreck site to Arlington spanned a century and a half, and they traveled halfway around the globe before finally being laid to rest here. Their story is as remarkable as the story of the ship in which they served. To learn more, read our guest blog post from Naval History and Heritage Command at: https://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Blog/Post/10995/The-Monitor-Is-No-More-Honoring-the-Lost-Men-of-USS-Monitor

To conclude #HispanicHeritageMonth, we honor U.S. Army Col. Louis Gonzaga Mendez Jr. who is laid to rest in Section 7A a...
10/15/2020

To conclude #HispanicHeritageMonth, we honor U.S. Army Col. Louis Gonzaga Mendez Jr. who is laid to rest in Section 7A at Arlington National Cemetery. A decorated airborne combat veteran of World War II, Colonel Louis Gonzaga Mendez was of Mexican, Spanish and Navajo descent. As commander of the 3rd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, he was dropped behind enemy lines in Normandy, France on June 5, 1944, the day before the D-Day invasion. For leading an attack that captured the town of Pretot, Mendez received the Distinguished Service Cross. He also led his battalion during Operation Market Garden and the Battle of the Bulge. In his Army career after the war, Mendez held a variety of command posts in the United States and abroad, rising to the rank of colonel; he also served as secretary of the Organization of American States' Inter-American Defense Board. He earned a master's degree in international relations from Georgetown University and taught at the U.S. Army Infantry School at Fort Benning. After retiring from the military in 1970, he held leadership positions in the Department of Education.

McPherson Drive—a primary thoroughfare on the western side of the cemetery, parallel to Fort Myer—will be closed for nec...
10/15/2020

McPherson Drive—a primary thoroughfare on the western side of the cemetery, parallel to Fort Myer—will be closed for necessary repairs beginning October 15. The closure is expected to last until the summer of 2021. This repair work will close off all vehicle traffic to Jackson Circle, Capron Drive, Lawton Drive, McKinley Drive and Miles Drive, as well as the southwest portion of Grant Drive.

Visitors to Sections 3, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 22, 24 and 44 of the cemetery will be impacted. Visitors may access these sections by following the signs placed near the construction areas and marked parking locations. Upon arrival to the affected sections, those who need assistance during the construction period may call 703-614-1111.

Parking for family pass holders will be available at designated locations: Farragut Drive near the USS Maine Memorial; Porter Drive near the Nurses Memorial; and Grant Drive near General John J. Pershing’s gravesite.

Due to construction and uneven grounds, please allow additional time while visiting areas near McPherson Drive. Visitors may encounter low horticulture barriers, if so, please proceed with caution.

Yesterday marked the 245th birthday of the United States Navy. On our website, we reflect on those sailors and civilians...
10/14/2020

Yesterday marked the 245th birthday of the United States Navy. On our website, we reflect on those sailors and civilians who faithfully served the Navy and were laid to rest in the hallowed ground of Arlington National Cemetery. A guest blog post, by the Collections Manager at the National Museum of the United States Navy, features the Navy legacy at Arlington National Cemetery and can be discovered at https://arlingtoncemetery.mil/Blog/Post/10994/The-Navy-Legacy-at-Arlington-National-Cemetery

U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser from April 8, 2020 of the USS Maine Memorial.

Happy birthday, U.S. Navy! The United States Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy, established during the Rev...
10/13/2020

Happy birthday, U.S. Navy! The United States Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy, established during the Revolutionary War. On October 13, 1775, the Continental Congress created the Continental Navy, then comprised of only two armed ships, to sail along the Atlantic coast in search of British munitions ships. After the war, the Constitution of the United States, ratified in 1789, empowered the newly-established Congress “to provide and maintain a navy.” The War Department administered naval affairs until April 30, 1798, when Congress established the Department of the Navy. In 1972, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Elmo R. Zumwalt authorized official recognition of October 13 as the birthday of the United States Navy.

To commemorate the Navy’s 245th birthday, go to our website to read two guest blog posts by Navy historians, and to learn about notable Navy gravesites and memorials at the cemetery (www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/blog). Our online commemoration highlights selected individuals who made key contributions to U.S. Navy history (www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Explore/notable-graves/us-navy). Every day, however, we honor all sailors buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Each Navy gravesite represents service and sacrifice that contributed to victory at sea.

U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser from June 3, 2019.

#OnThisDay in 2000, the USS Cole, commanded by Kirk Lippold, arrived in Port of Aden, Yemen to refuel. Shortly after it ...
10/12/2020

#OnThisDay in 2000, the USS Cole, commanded by Kirk Lippold, arrived in Port of Aden, Yemen to refuel. Shortly after it moored, a small craft approached the ship and detonated an explosion, blowing a 40-by-60-foot gash into the side of the warship. The blast hit the vessel's galley, where many of the crew had lined up for food. Seventeen sailors were killed, with an additional 39 wounded.

The British Royal Navy frigate HM Marlborough diverted course and steamed quickly to the Cole's aid, bringing supplies and medical equipment. Quick damage control saved the vessel, and after it was determined that the keel remained sound, the U.S. Navy tugged the Cole out of the harbor.

The attack was the deadliest on a U.S. vessel since the attack on the USS Stark in 1987, and one of the most significant terrorist incidents prior to 9/11. Al-Qaeda claimed responsibility for the suicide attack, and in 2007, a federal judge found the government of Sudan liable for facilitating it.

Four crewmen from the USS Cole rest at Arlington: Richard D. Costelow, Section 60; Cherone L. Gunn, Section 60; Kenneth E. Clodfelter, Section 60; Ronald S. Owens, Court 5, Section M1.

(U.S. Army photo from Oct. 12, 2015. Sailors participated in a ceremony to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the attack on the USS Cole.)

Address

1 Memorial Avenue
Arlington, VA
22211

Arlington National Cemetery is located across the Memorial Bridge from Washington, D.C., on the Virginia side of the Potomac River. Memorial Avenue, which is intersected by the George Washington Memorial Parkway at a traffic rotary, connects Memorial Bridge to the cemetery gates. Memorial Avenue ends at the entry court of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial. Arlington Cemetery Metro Station Metro The Arlington National Cemetery Station is located on the Metropolitan Washington D.C. Area Metrorail's Blue Line. There is also a Metrobus stop on Memorial Avenue. Information on the hours of operation, schedules and fares for the Metrorail and Metrobus are available at www.wmata.com. The cemetery is also a stop on most tour guides itineraries.

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