Arlington Cemetery, 150 Years

Visitors entrance to Arlington Cemetery.

Visitors entrance to Arlington Cemetery.

STARTING MAY 2014, ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY WILL HOST A SERIES OF EVENTS TO COMMEMORATE THE 150TH ANNIVERSARY OF ITS EXISTENCE.

arlington00

DURING MAY AND JUNE, VARIOUS CEREMONIES WILL TAKE PLACE.  THE TWO MONTH SPAN IS TO EMPHASIZE, FIRST- THE BURIAL OF THE FIRST SOLDIER ON 13 MAY 1864, UNION PVT. WILLIAM HENRY CHRISTMAN.

Union Pvt. William Henry Christman

Union Pvt. William Henry Christman

SECOND, IT WAS OFFICIALLY DECLARED A MILITARY CEMETERY ON 15 JUNE 1864.  ARLINGTON WILL CLOSE THEIR CEREMONIES AT THE TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER.

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

 

MAY THEY ALL REST IN PEACE.    

Click on images to enlarge.

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Farewell Salutes –

Michael Adamson – Lebanon, PA; US Army, MSgt. (Ret. 20 years)

 John Altieri – Naples, FL; US Army, 2nd Lt.Veterans_Day-thanks

Curtis Cooper – Mountain Home, AR; US Air Force, Vietnam & Desert Storm

Silda Covington – Rexburg, ID; WAVES, WWII

Charles Helvey – Sheridan, WY; US Army Air Corps, WWII, ETO, waist gunner B-17s

John Whitehead Hunter – Devonport, NZ; RNZ Navy # D15528

Kenneth Lee – Lake Placid, FL; US Army, WWII, Cpl

David Savage – Anchorage, AK; US Army, Colonel (Ret.), WWII & Korea

Mabel “Doreen” Tunney – Toronto, Can; RC Air Force, WWII

James Vaught – Myrtle Beach, SC; US Army, Korea, 187th RCT

Taylor Young – Duquesne, PA; US Army, WWII, 472nd Artillery

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on May 24, 2014, in Korean War, Uncategorized, Vietnam, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 89 Comments.

  1. Utterly amazing the training and duty that the guards of the tomb do. I recently watched a video about the rigors of that particular duty and I learned so much. I think they must have a lot of patience to be able to coordinate the perfection of the uniforms and their precise movements while standing guard. I’d go nuts were it my job!

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  2. One hundred and fifty years. I visited once – it’s such a sobering place.

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  3. gpcox, What a tribute again! Your posts are the “tops”! Thanks for the “Like” for “1912, The Movie” on my “excuseusforliving.com Phil

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  4. I appreciate learning from you. =)

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  5. What a wonderful way to say thank you to our soldiers. Trace Adkins ‘Arlington’ remains one of my favorite songs.

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    • And as it should be! But how come you don’t hear Lee Greenwood’s “Proud to be an American” very often? Maybe I’ll use a link for that – next holiday? What do you think, Jacqui?

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  6. I’ve been to Arlington Cemetery twice and a sprinkling of WW1 CWGC cemeteries – all solemnly beautiful and peaceful places. The last Arlington visit was a few months ago (during the ‘shutdown’ and we almost didn’t make it due to conflicting information about whether the Cemetery was actually open) but I’m not sure I had registered that this big milestone was approaching.

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    • After what happened before – I don’t think the government would dare to even try to close Arlington! Thank you for taking the time out of your day to comment here, your visit shows the veterans that you care.

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  7. Have visited The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and watched the changing of the guard. I am constantly amazed at the rigorous restrictions places on the guards there, yet they continue to honor the fallen. Blessings to all those who serve or have served in the military.

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    • So many have seen the ceremony, but not everyone truly understands the meaning the behind it – thank you for your sentiments, Bev. You’re one of the few.

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  8. One hundred and fifty years… that’s quite a legacy. Thank you, GP, for pointing it out.

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  9. If ever I get the chance I will go, humbly and gratefully. Thank you.

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  10. Thank you for this. My brother is buried here.

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  11. I’ve been to Arlington so many times, and it never fails to move me. I’m living 4000 miles away from it now, and I still feel the same emotion from your words and photos. Thank you for those memories, and the reminder of the importance of this place and time.

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  12. Thanks for that info on your countrys most reverered Arlington cemetery.
    Ian

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  13. sunsetdragon

    No respect when folks have to be reminded to treat out heroes with the dignity and respect they deserve.
    I hope more parents are educating their children to the real meaning if this week end and not just an extra day off of work and school.
    My husband- SP 4 TimD-Disabled Nam Vet-United States Army-1970-1973, and 1977 to 1979-salutes you and all Vets-active, non active, living and dead.

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    • You comments are well said and very true! Please shake your husband’s hand for me and thank him from the bottom of my heart for his service and convictions! I have problems even thinking about Nam, thank God he returned!

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  14. I haven’t yet been to Arlington, though may get there some day.
    This is a beautiful testament and salute to those that have given their lives – historically rich.

    The times I visit your blog I always pick up something (historically) that I never knew.

    Thanks for sharing.

    ML
    x

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  15. Although I understand gpcox why they called it the Tomb of the unknown Solder, we give thanks that each one of those who died defending us was known not just by name but was fully known by their Creator, each one counted, they were important and we rejoice that many will be united with their loved ones one day.

    Thank you for your heart respect for them gpcox

    Christian Love from both of us – Anne

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  16. A really powerful post, well said and well done. I’ve been offline all week and it will take days to catch up here. Any news from Sheri?

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    • She’s in a room across the hall from Tom. Finishing up an anthology and having a meeting to put the volunteer program into other VA hospitals. She left a long comment on the previous post (U.S. National Maritime Day) if you care to see her up date. I’ll be emailing her again, probably tomorrow for more news.

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  17. Closing their ceremonies at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier?? I can’t believe that! Oh, my…

    But hallowed ground it is. I am glad a certain elected official decided not to step on those grounds that day and instead went to his precious Chicago.

    Oops. Didn’t mean to get political. Let us honor the fallen. Although he was not KIA, I am headed to see Old Man Jack. I will think of Smitty and many others I did not meet.

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  18. I’ve been to Arlington three times. Sometimes the number visitors and crowds, even though most are respectful, can be a distraction.

    The most meaningful memory I have of the Cemetery is the time I went on a cold snowy December day. It was the middle of the week and I was in DC for a conference. Somehow I ended up with an afternoon off and took the tourmobile around to all the major monuments. Entering Arlington, it was just me, the driver and the tour guide when we stopped at the tomb of the unknown.

    Some how I managed to get there right at the changing of the guard. I was the only spectator – the only civilian in the stands. Still the guard follow their ritual flawlessly. I had some very good camera equipment with me and raised the 35mm to take a picture or two.

    But then, it felt wrong – disrespectful, so I lowered my camera, took off my hat, stood quietly and waited for the changing of the guard to complete. I remained standing until the relief guard had retired and the replacement guard has started walking his post. Then I turned and retraced my steps to the tourmobile stop.

    You must visit Arlington, in the snow, alone – armed only with your respect for the fallen.

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    • I hope one day to, both my previous visits were in spring or fall. Yes, that guard change is done according to specifications whether people are there or not. A very respectful memorial.

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  19. Wow! 150 years. That’s amazing. I can imagine they’ll be having some magnificent ceremonies. 🙂

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  20. Reblogged this on The ObamaCrat™.

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  21. Was there a few weeks ago for the first time-a place the demands respect. Sad to say, many of the visitors were not granting it that wish. On the flip side: my family and most others were deeply moved.

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  22. GP, A terrific Memorial Day tribute to all that served now & in the past! Phil

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    • Thank you, Phil. This is another part of Military Appreciation Month that closes with Memorial Day on Monday. Frankly each month should be our appreciation month.

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  23. GP, something worth remembering. I’m glad to see you referred to this memorial as, “The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier”–which it still is, in spite of the more modern, “Tomb of the Unknowns”– which I refuse to use, as long as that same inscription is there.

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  24. You are such a great example to all of us that it is NOT about burgers! I’m going to share this on my personal FB page but also on my city’s annual memorial day service FB page. Volunteering on the committee that makes it happen each year is one of my favorite civic activities.
    Thank you!!! You do so much to educate and remind us

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  25. Arlington National Cemetery is such a beautiful and moving place; thank you for the post to remind us.

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    • Isn’t it a remarkable memorial? But everything sure hits home when you take the long view of the tombstones. Thank you for commenting, Christopher.

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  26. Reblogged this on weggieboy's blog and commented:
    I can’t think of any better way to emphasize the significance of Memorial Day than to reblog gpcox’s post for today. His posting always are interesting for their historic relevance and insights into war. I recommend you take a bit of time to read through a few, maybe even subscribe to this blog, as part of your Memorial Day observances.

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  27. I’m reblogging this one. I can’t think of any better way to emphasize this isn’t a day for sales and picnics.

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  28. Great post — and a great reminder about what Memorial Day represents.

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  29. This would be a lovely time to visit. Have you been there?

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  30. We must never forget why this day exists!
    It is not about hamburgers, it is about Heroes.

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  31. It’s a shame about the need to have a sign to remind people to behave properly!

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