A new 561-acre national cemetery in Solano County, Calif., 27 miles southwest of Sacramento along Interstate 80 between Dixon and Vacaville, serves veterans' needs. Its Unclaimed Veterans Fallen Heroes Memorial is the largest in California. Events include Wreaths Across America and the annual Memorial Day Ceremony.
When Northern California veterans' organizations gather at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery,
it is often to give proper military honors to unclaimed veterans'
Sacramento Valley National Cemetery (SVNC) and the Missing in America Project (MIAP) worked jointly with the efforts of private, state and federal organizations to give veterans and their dependents a final resting place.
California Assembly Bill 1644 sponsored by Vietnam Veterans of
America and enacted in 2010 requires each county in California to conduct a thorough search of mortuaries, crematoriums, and other facilities to locate unclaimed remains of veterans. Once located, the law permits the remains of qualified veterans to be transferred to a veteran's cemetery for appropriate burial with military honors. It is the responsibility of the County Remains Officer to ensure full compliance with the law.
For years, the remains of 35 veterans and two dependents sat unclaimed in storage facilities. The goal of the MIAP, the Sonoma County Veterans Remains Officer, and all those attending, is to give these American heroes what they have earned – a proper burial with full military honors.
These cremains are not from deaths related to war. A veteran may die without a family, for instance. Since 2009 MIAP has been diligently working with funeral directors and veteran organizations to identify unclaimed veterans remains and ensure a proper military burial is performed. MIAP has visited more than 2,242 funeral homes across the nation. The project volunteers have located 13,800 cremains in total. Of the cremains located 1,898 were identified as eligible veterans, and 1,631 have been interred properly.
For more information call the cemetery administration office at 707-693-2460 or visit the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery Support Committee Website at: http://www.svncsc.org .