Jacksonville National Cemetery
|Type||United States National Cemetery|
|Size||526 acres (213 ha)|
|Number of graves||1,000+|
The Veterans Administration was authorized to establish six new burial sites by the National Cemetery Act of 2003. Areas not served by an existing National Cemetery and containing at least 170,000 veteran residents included Bakersfield, California; Birmingham, Alabama; Jacksonville, Florida; Sarasota County, Florida; southeastern Pennsylvania and Columbia-Greenville, South Carolina.
Initial construction began in August, 2008 and created a 20-acre (8.1 ha) burial area with temporary facilities. Stage 1A was completed in December, 2008, and the grounds were consecrated January 5, 2009. The second construction stage is scheduled to commence in the summer of 2009 and include an entrance, roadways within the 52-acre (21 ha) section, permanent buildings for administration and maintenance, a public information center and two shelters for services during inclement weather. Infrastructure consisting of drainage, fencing, landscaping, irrigation and utilities is also being built. The section under development will provide 8,145 gravesites, including 7,300 pre-placed crypts, 5,100 in-ground cremation sites and 4,992 columbarium niches.
As of early May, 2011, the cemetery contained the remains of over 1,000 veterans, despite being open for just 28 months. U.S. Representative Ander Crenshaw toured the facility and commented, "I don't think I ever thought this would be as beautiful as it is. It reminds me of Arlington National Cemetery - it can't help but give you goose bumps." Cemetery officials expect the second construction stage to be completed near Memorial Day, 2011. There are also plans to build a new $24 million, two lane road from the existing Pecan Park Road to the cemetery, for direct access from Interstate 95, but no timetable has been set.
- Jack D. Hunter, author of 17 novels, including his bestseller, The Blue Max (1964), which became a 1966 movie. Hunter served as an Army counterintelligence officer during and after World War II.
- VADM Michael P. Kalleres, During his 32 year military career Adm. Kalleres led the United States Navy Second Fleet during Operation Desert Storm and MSC. Also during his career, the admiral received a number of awards, including twice receiving the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the nation’s highest peacetime defense award, as well as the Navy Distinguished Service Medal. In retirement, he was awarded the University of Florida Distinguished Public Service Award and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
-  Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration, Jacksonville National Cemetery factsheet
- Brumley, Jeff: "Jacksonville National Cemetery a big plus for families of veterans" Florida Times-Union, May 10, 2011
-  Department of Veterans Affairs, Burial & Memorials, New National Cemeteries
- "Jacksonville National Cemetery Consecrated" First Coast News, January 5, 2009