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Veteran Deaths Fuels Push to Build Cemeteries

 
Veteran Deaths Fuels Push to Build Cemeteries
Posted February 4th, 2014 @ 5:07am by KTRH’s Nik Rajkovic

A Nevada Democrat is pushing legislation that would force the Department of Veterans Affairs to build more national cemeteries as the number of veterans dying continues to rise.

Last year alone, almost 125,000 veterans were laid to rest at national cemeteries.

However, Houston National Cemetery director Mat Williams insists space is not an issue here.

"We just had a major project finish here last June, we added 18,000 more crypts, 7,000 more columbariums, so we have plenty of space to last another 30, 40, 50 years," Williams tells KTRH News.

In fact, Williams says none of the Texas cemeteries are in need of space.

"Dallas-Fort Worth is brand new, San Antonio's Fort Sam Houston has a lot of land left, Fort Bliss in El Paso has a lot of land," he says. "So, all of the national cemeteries in the state of Texas are in good shape."

However, 11 states -- many which are retirement destinations in the West -- still do not have a national cemetery.

The VA said it plans to build five new cemeteries across the country, after lowering the population threshold required to build them. 

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