Arlington National Cemetery quietly changed its policy on ‘full military honors’ for Medal of Honor heroes
Arlington National Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 400,000 service members, veterans and their families. The hallowed ground is a symbol of national service, and a shrine to the sacrifices made by those in uniform.
In recent years, there’s been a growing push to see a change in what funeral honors are rendered for some of the country’s most distinguished heroes: Medal of Honor recipients and prisoners of war. As it turns out, the cemetery has already made some of those changes.
Earlier this week, lawmakers from both parties introduced legislation in the House and Senate to ensure that Medal of Honor recipients and prisoners of war receive full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery, Stars and Stripes reports.
“Full military honors ceremonies remind us of the service and valor demonstrated by those who have defended, protected, and sacrificed for freedom and democracy,” Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.) said in a statement. A Navy veteran himself, Panetta introduced the legislation in the House on Feb. 6.
“This is a simple, but necessary fix that provides these selfless Veterans with the honors they deserve,” Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas), a Navy SEAL veteran who co-sponsored the House bill, told Task & Purpose via email.
In the case of Medal of Honor recipients, Arlington National Cemetery currently offers “full military honors,” though it’s a relatively new development. The cemetery’s official website was updated “within the last seven to ten days,” to reflect the change, Barbara Lewandrowski, the director of public affairs at Arlington National Cemetery told Task & Purpose on Thursday.
Read more here:: Task & Purpose