Arlington Cemetery Grave Personal Items Removed - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Arlington Cemetery Grave Personal Items Removed

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There's controversy this morning among some of the families of those buried at Arlington National Cemetery. It has to do with a forced cleanup of a certain section of the cemetery.

Section 60 is the burial ground for more than 800 soldiers who died in the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Until recently, the graves in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery were adorned with personal items. Loved ones would often leave behind mementos of all kinds, a way to keep their connection to those who departed too soon. 

However, the letters and pictures have been removed to make the grounds look like the rest of the cemetery and keep the area to the same cleanliness standard as the rest of the cemetery. Therefore, all those photos, drawings, flags and other personal items have been scrubbed away, taken off, and scrapped from the tombstones.

Some of those things are being saved in storage to be returned to the families, but many of the picture frames, bracelets, and other items were tossed.

You may remember back in 2011 when another scandal rocked Arlington. An investigation by the Justice Department uncovered missing and mislabeled headstones. It also found that remains were mishandled, either lost or buried in the wrong plots.

Some of the families who left items at gravesites have complained, but Arlington is sticking by the new set of rules.

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