Fort Custer National Cemetery

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Fort Custer National Cemetery
Details
Year established 1943
Location Augusta, Michigan
Country United States
Coordinates 42°20′26″N 85°18′45″W / 42.34056°N 85.31250°W / 42.34056; -85.31250Coordinates: 42°20′26″N 85°18′45″W / 42.34056°N 85.31250°W / 42.34056; -85.31250
Type United States National Cemetery
Owned by United States Department of Veterans Affairs
Size 770.4 acres (311.8 ha)
Number of graves 30,000
Website Official
Find a Grave Fort Custer National Cemetery

Fort Custer National Cemetery is a United States National Cemetery located just outside of the village of Augusta in Kalamazoo County, Michigan. It encompasses 770.4 acres (311.8 ha), and as of 2014 had 30,000 interments.

History[edit]

Named for General George Armstrong Custer, the original Camp Custer was built in 1917 as part of the military mobilization during World War I. After the war, it also served as a demobilization camp. The cemetery itself was not created until 1943. During World War II Fort Custer was expanded to serve as a training ground and as a place to hold German prisoners of war.

Of the German POWs held during World War II, 26 died and were buried in the cemetery. Sixteen of which were killed when a truck carrying them from a work detail collided with a train near Blissfield, Michigan.

It was not until 1981 that Fort Custer cemetery officially became Fort Custer National Cemetery, receiving a large plot of land from the Fort Custer Training Center for expansion. In 1997 another expansion was made, with the addition of 60 acres (24 ha).

Noteworthy monuments[edit]

  • The Avenue of Flags, a row of 152 flag poles along the main road of the cemetery, as well as the main flagpole and an additional 50 flag poles, one for each state flag, in a semicircle at the road end.

Notable burials[edit]

  • Wade Herbert Flemons (1940–1993) – United States Army Private First Class who served in the Vietnam War, and R&B musician

See also[edit]

External links[edit]