Tuesday, 22 March 2011

The Arlington Cemetery Saga Continues

Over the past year....Arlington Cemetery has met up with a bunch of issues.  They had to fire the chief and the number two....because of incompetence.   This week, we had the newest issue pop up.

Somewhere back about a hundred years ago....the managers of the cemetery got around to allowing reservations.  Now, you'd scratch your head.  This is a military cemetery and you'd think it'd be first-come...first-serve.  But it simply couldn't work that way.

Some folks came up and insisted that they wanted to right to have their wife buried next to them....which military tradition allowed.  Course, that meant that as you buried one....you had to allow a open spot.  Somehow....at least through the 1920s, the 1930s and the 1940s.....this reservation system worked.  The thing is....it was all based on 3x5 cards.

You can imagine a 624-acre cemetery of a vast nature....but the idea that this whole thing was held together by 3x5 cards really taxes your mind.

Up through the 1970s and such....it still kinda continued.  But evidence this week shows that things started to get uncorked in the 1980s and on.....as promises made....simply couldn't be kept.  The number of dead GIs and their spouses....was taking the management staff way beyond what they could handle.  When Uncle Joe finally died and Junior showed up to bury him next to his brother.....the spot was already filled.  Over and over....folks found this to violate the "promise" made that they could be next to each other.

So folks are upset and they've turned this into an Army investigation.  Congressmen will likely get involved.  I can't see how they can right any wrongs here.  You certainly aren't going to dig someone up because he got buried in the wrong place.

As for a promise to reserve spots?  I just can't see Arlington run this way.  If you want to be buried there....it's the honor of the situation....and not some reservation system.

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