Our National Cemeteries are stepping up to the challenge of providing service through the pandemic. While we are observant of social distancing and realize the challenges in this environment, we still have a vital service to provide. Our NCA staff members continue our mission to provide an honorable burial service for our Veterans and other eligible members.

As Mountain Home National Cemetery staff member Logan Shell said, “There is no telework when you are operating an excavator.” NCA takes pride in providing a critical service during this time of need. We have limited services to direct interments to keep our families and staff member safe. The family is still able to view but there is no committal service or military honors. We will provide those services for families who wish to proceed after the emergency.

We provide world class customer service to our Veterans and their families. Part of our commitment is to keep everyone as safe as possible. We assist visitors to access a gravesite when they are unable to visit on their own. We ensure we have ADA access to our facilities. The measures we have in effect now are just another way we are keeping everyone safe.

One of our biggest challenges is dealing with misinformation. If you have a question about what services we provide please visit our website at www.cem.va.gov. If you have questions about the best ways to keep you and your family safe, visit the CDC site at www.cdc.gov. The more accurate information we have available the less chance there is to sow confusion. See FEMA’s Coronavirus Rumor Control page for the top myths and scams surrounding the pandemic.

We look forward to coming out on the other side of this emergency and returning to normal. For now, we will continue our honorable service to our communities and ask for understanding from the people we serve.

More information on COVID-19

For the latest VA updates on coronavirus and commonsense tips on preventing its spread, visit https://www.va.gov/coronavirus.

For more information about coronavirus, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

Kirk Leopard is the director of the Mountain Home National Cemetery.

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Published on Mar. 26, 2020

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