Sarasota National Cemetery

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Conceptual rendering of the public information and visitor center at Sarasota National Cemetery, by C. M. Veloso

Sarasota National Cemetery is a 295-acre (119 ha) United States National Cemetery located near Sarasota, Sarasota County, Florida. Administered by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, it was the sixth national cemetery developed in Florida and is expected to hold more than ten burials per day for the next ten years as World War II and Korean veterans die.[1]


There are six other national cemeteries in Florida, but the closest to the new location, Bay Pines National Cemetery,[1] is closed to remains buried in caskets. 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 having at least 170,000 veteran residents included Bakersfield, California; Birmingham, Alabama; Jacksonville, Florida; Sarasota County, Florida; southeastern Pennsylvania, and Columbia- Greenville, South Carolina.[2]

Groundbreaking and dedication at the 295-acre (119 ha) Sarasota site was held on June 1, 2008.[1] The first interment was on January 9, 2009.[3]

Site status[edit]

The plan for development of the facility is composed of three phases, but only the first phase has been funded, at $27.8 million to accommodate 25,000 burials. Initial construction on those 60 acres (24 ha) began in June, 2008 and created space for 18,200 casket burials within 15,200 designated crypts, 7,000 columbarium niches, and 500 in-ground cremations. The grounds were consecrated in December 2008, prior to the first burials.

Phase one includes an entrance, roadways within the section, a public information center with restrooms, and two solar-powered shelters for committal services during inclement weather. Infrastructure consisting of drainage, landscaping, irrigation, and utilities also is being built.[3] Permanent buildings for administration and maintenance were scheduled for completion in 2010.[1]

Location of cemetery in Florida

Notable burials[edit]

  • Rick Casares (1931–2013), United States Army soldier in the Korean War and professional football player
  • Marty Springstead (1937–2012), United States Army veteran and Major League Baseball umpire
  • Hal White (1919–2001), United States Navy veteran of World War II, and Major League Baseball pitcher


  1. ^ a b c d Hackett, Kim: [1] Tampa Tribune, May 31, 2008-Sarasota County Veterans Cemetery To Be Dedicated Sunday
  2. ^ [2] Department of Veterans Affairs, Burial, and Memorials, New National Cemeteries
  3. ^ a b [3] Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration, Sarasota National Cemetery factsheet, January 2009

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 27°14′25″N 82°22′50″W / 27.24028°N 82.38056°W / 27.24028; -82.38056