Visit to Miramar National Cemetery

The newest National Cemetery in San Diego

The photos and videos on this page are from my latest visit to Miramar National Cemetery in San Diego. This is my favorite of the two National Cemeteries in San Diego. I like the layout of the cemetery, and it’s location immediately West of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar provides regular “fly-overs” by Marine Corps aircraft.

Fort Rosecrans was the original National Cemetery in San Diego. It closed to new burials in the late 1960s. At that point, the nearest National Cemetery open to new burials was in Riverside County. Miramar National Cemetery opened in 2010 to accommodate approximately 235,000 new veteran burials in San Diego. There are dozens of burials every week, and you can see the “new areas” behind fences that the cemetery maintenance crews are preparing for future burials. I like the monuments that are unique to Miramar. Local non-profit veteran’s groups paid for each of the monuments.

You will see some questions about Miramar National Cemetery in my San Diego cemetery trivia quizzes!

Videos and photos from my visit:

Above is my video about the Cemetery, standing in section 16

Miramar National Cemetery Support Foundation

The Cemetery Support Foundation was formed in 2006 by local military veterans to persuade the Veteran’s Administration to create a new National Cemetery in San Diego. Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery closed to new burials in 1966, forcing veterans and their families to travel to Riverside County for burial in a National Cemetery.

All of the memorial monuments at Miramar were funded privately, coordinated by the Support Foundation. This includes the Avenue of Flags, unique to Miramar. Here is the link to the Foundation:

Home – Miramar National Cemetery Support Foundation (miramarcemetery.org)

My video above shows the Carillon tower at Miramar National Cemetery, South side of section 10/11
My photo of the plaque near the base of the Carillon bell tower, taken during my visit to Miramar National Cemetery in San Diego
The Carillon is dedicated to U.S. Army soldiers involved in a combat operation in Korea

Photo of one of the plaques at the Carillon tower at Miramar National Cemetery, on the South side of sections 10/11. The Carillon tower dedication ceremony was held in November of 2016. It honors the U.S. Army combat units involved in a major battle to protect Outpost Harry during the Korean war.

My video above shows the view of the East side of Miramar National Cemetery
, with the Flag Assembly area and the Avenue of Flags. The large U.S. flag is positioned at half-staff on weekdays when burials are taking place. I’m standing in section 16.

Grave of General Cardenas

Retired Air Force General Robert Cardenas, shown (left photo above) speaking at the dedication of his bust near the Veteran’s Museum in Balboa Park honoring his contributions to military aviation, and his grave at Miramar National Cemetery. General Cardenas led the volunteer effort to create a second National Cemetery in San Diego for veteran burials.

Medal of Honor designation on grave marker

Of the thousands of men and women that served honorably and are buried at Miramar, only one so far was awarded the Medal of Honor for valor during the Indian War.

The grave of Sergeant Charles Schroeter. Medal of Honor grave markers are indicated by gold colored lettering, versus black lettering for other grave markers.

“Pre-burial” of casket vaults to ensure straight rows of headstones

Every time I visit a National Cemetery, I admire the “uniform” placement of the graves and markers into rows and columns. That led to research on how its’ done! Before a new veteran’s cemetery or section of a cemetery is opened, the casket vaults are pre-buried. Below is a copy of a satellite photo showing the pre-burial of vaults in a new section of Miramar.

satellite photo of pre-burying casket vaults at Miramar National Cemetery

Monuments on display at Miramar National Cemetery

My photo of the Liberation statue, taken during my visit to Miramar National Cemeter in San Diego

Photo above: statue titled The Liberation, honoring U.S. Prisoners of War from all conflicts. The statue depicts a P.O.W. “emerging” from confinement. Paid for by donations.

The photos above show the two sides of the Gold Star Families Memorial Monument. Donated.

Veterans Legacy Memorial

As I researched information for Memorial day, I found the VLM, or Veteran’s Legacy Memorial. The VLM page was launched in 2019 on the Veteran’s Administration (V.A.) website, reserved for digital or online memorials to over 9 million U.S. military veterans buried in both government cemeteries and private cemeteries. As long as the veteran received a VA-approved grave marker since 1996, they should be included in the VLM.
The VLM allows users to search for specific veterans by name, service branch, war period, and cemetery, and encourages sharing stories and memories about these honorable individuals. Anyone can add information, which is reviewed by VA staff before “going public.”
An article in the Marine Corps Times from May 20, 2024 states that the VA is actively expanding the VLM. By the end of 2024, the plan is for veterans to add information to their own tribute page while they are still alive. While the tribute page for a living veteran will be accessible for adding information, it will not be public until after the veteran’s death.

Veterans Legacy Memorial | U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (va.gov)https://www.vlm.cem.va.gov/

VA moving to let living veterans prep their online memorial pages (marinecorpstimes.com)https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/veterans/2024/05/20/va-moving-to-let-living-veterans-prep-their-online-memorial-pages/

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