The Daily ReTORt

My photo
I'm no longer posting here. Visit my new blog -> WWW.THEDAILYRETORT.COM

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Our War Dead Deserve Better

Arlington National Cemetery Graves (Burial Cri...Image via Wikipedia
With the start of the summer vacation season and the FIFA World Cup, it’s possible that you may have missed a shocking story that came to light recently.

A series of investigations have revealed that as many as 200 grave sites at Arlington National Cemetery are mismarked or unmarked after a review of nearly a third of the sections that presumably contain remains of soldiers.

The full Washington Post story by reporter Christian Davenport can be accessed at this link

The majority of the impacted remains are those of veterans who served from World War I through the Vietnam War. One example of the military mix-up cited in the story found that the remains of a Tennessee woman’s sister who served in the Air Force were buried directly above the remains of another veteran.

To me, the most disturbing aspect of this story was that it largely occurred because of a reported rift between two administrators at the cemetery who didn’t communicate with each other because of a “…lack of mutual trust and respect for each other….”

So it appears that two bickering bureaucrats were responsible for the shameful shoving of the remains of honored veterans and war dead into mismarked and mismanaged resting places, creating a swirl of unrest for the survivors.

It’s stunning that an inter-office conflict between two cubicle jockeys defending their administrative turf at a revered landmark, created such pain for true heroes who selflessly served and died defending the foundational ideals of this country.

You would think cemetery administrators would pay exacting attention regarding the remains of the service personnel who helped pay for our freedom with their very lives.

The military has pledged to do what it takes to resolve the issues, including exhuming and x-raying the remains if necessary. While the final outcome remains to be seen, it should not have happened in the first place.

What’s your reaction to this story?

Enhanced by Zemanta


  1. My reaction is utter disgust, honestly. I am a veteran. I have served beside those who paid the ultimate price. I have been to Arlington. I have seen the honor that (at one time at least) seemed to be there. For me, it was an honor (and that will never change) to see what I saw and participate in what I did. However, this is just unreal. Stacking bodies? Mixing them up? There just aren't words to accurately describe my thoughts at the moment.

  2. @Laura, I completely agree! I try to imagine the shock and horror a military family goes through when they discover a loved one died in the line of duty ONLY to be further devastated with such avoidable atrocities. Thanks so much for your service to our country!