Governor Steve Beshear's Communications Office
Governor Beshear Dedicates Greenup Veterans Cemetery
Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North East is the state’s fourth state veterans cemetery
ARGILLITE, Ky. —Governor Steve Beshear today participated in the dedication ceremony for the Commonwealth’s fourth state veterans cemetery in Greenup County.
“Today, we remember the men and women who have bravely served our country in the armed forces,” said Gov. Beshear. “I am honored to be here to dedicate the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North East and express my gratitude for the hard work of the legislature and the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs for locating this property and obtaining the federal grant to support the development of this cemetery.”
Frank Salvas Sr., director of the State Cemeteries Grant Service of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, congratulated Governor Beshear and the legislature for its support of programs and facilities like the cemetery for Kentucky’s 339,000 veterans.
“The North East Veterans Cemetery is the fourth facility established through the partnership between the Federal VA and the State of Kentucky,” said Frank Salvas Sr., director of the State Cemeteries Grant Service of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “In all, VA’s State Cemetery Grants Service has awarded the State of Kentucky $29,034,934 since the first Hopkinsville grant awarded in 2002. In FY 2010, 703 veterans and their dependents have been interred in three established cemeteries in Hopkinsville, Radcliff and Williamstown. I am confident that the staff here at this cemetery will continue to honor and respect our fallen Heroes.”
Other speakers at the ceremony included Fourth District Congressman Geoff Davis, of Fort Mitchell; Sen. Robin Webb, of Grayson; and Rep. Tanya Pullin, of South Shore.
“As an 11-year Army veteran, I was honored to join Governor Beshear and our Eastern Kentucky veterans for this important dedication,” said Congressman Davis. “Kentucky is home to 344,000 veterans who have put their lives on the line to defend our nation. The Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North East demonstrates the Commonwealth’s profound appreciation for the sacrifice these brave men and women have made to protect our freedom.”
“I am proud to be a part of this lasting memorial to our servicemen and women, past, present and future,” said Sen. Webb. “Let it be a reminder to our citizens that freedom is not free and a thankful tribute.”
“Although the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North East will not open until October 1st, the ceremony to commemorate the opening took place today,” said Rep. Pullin. “It gave veterans, their families and other guests an opportunity to visit the new facility. I commend the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs for their great work on this project.”
The cemetery will serve veterans and their families from northeastern Kentucky, as well as those from southeastern Ohio and western West Virginia, supporting the federal goal of ensuring that a national or state veterans cemetery is no further than 75 miles from veterans’ families. KDVA is currently seeking land for its fifth state veterans cemetery to be located in Leslie County in southeastern Kentucky.
The Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs began construction on KVCNE in August 2009. The cemetery is located on approximately 75 acres on East Park Drive off Highway 67 and Industrial Parkway in Greenup County, approximately one half-mile north of U.S. Highway 64 at the border of Boyd, Carter and Greenup counties. The Commonwealth of Kentucky purchased the land for the cemetery, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reimburses the state for $6.1 million in construction and equipment, and the state will pay the operating costs.
KVCNE is Kentucky’s fourth state veterans cemetery. Kentucky Veterans Cemetery West in Hopkinsville has interred more than 1,400 veterans and dependents since opening in 2004. Kentucky Veterans Cemetery Central in Radcliff has interred more than 1,300 veterans and dependents since opening in 2007, and Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North in Williamstown has interred more than 250 veterans and dependents since opening in 2008.