County Executive offers park to expand Jefferson Barracks Natl. Cemetery

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by Russell Kinsaul / KMOV

KMOV.com

Posted on May 27, 2013 at 6:42 PM

Updated Tuesday, May 28 at 4:54 AM

(KMOV) -- More than a thousand attended a Memorial Day service at Jefferson Barracks Cemetery Monday and many more visited the graves of loved ones there with the knowledge that the national cemetery is filling up fast.

Its estimated Jefferson Barracks cemetery will run out of space by the year 2025 and that worries many veterans.

Jeff Barnes said, “I’ve got brothers-in-law who fought in the Vietnam War and cousins who did the same thing and they’re worried about getting in here because it’s filling up fast and they’re still young.”

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley has offered to donate Sylvan Springs Park to the cemetery to use for expansion. The 70-acre park sits next door to the cemetery and is popular with families with young children.

Sylvan Springs Park was the site of the first temporary camp by U.S. soldiers in the area back in 1826. It was also the site of USO shows during World War II and currently has a popular skate park.

Park patron Harold Smith said he hoped some of the park could be preserved, “I think there’s plenty of park here that some of it could be devoted to veterans’ burial.”

St. Louis County officials haven’t made any final decision on whether to donate all or some of the park but Charlie Dooley, a Vietnam veteran, has gone on record supporting the idea of donating Sylvan Springs Park to the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.
(KMOV) -- More than a thousand attended a Memorial Day service at Jefferson Barracks Cemetery Monday and many more visited the graves of loved ones there with the knowledge that the national cemetery is filling up fast.

Its estimated Jefferson Barracks cemetery will run out of space by the year 2025 and that worries many veterans.

Jeff Barnes said, “I’ve got brothers-in-law who fought in the Vietnam War and cousins who did the same thing and they’re worried about getting in here because it’s filling up fast and they’re still young.”

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley has offered to donate Sylvan Springs Park to the cemetery to use for expansion. The 70-acre park sits next door to the cemetery and is popular with families with young children.

Sylvan Springs Park was the site of the first temporary camp by U.S. soldiers in the area back in 1826. It was also the site of USO shows during World War II and currently has a popular skate park.

Park patron Harold Smith said he hoped some of the park could be preserved, “I think there’s plenty of park here that some of it could be devoted to veterans’ burial.”

St. Louis County officials haven’t made any final decision on whether to donate all or some of the park but Charlie Dooley, a Vietnam veteran, has gone on record supporting the idea of donating Sylvan Springs Park to the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.

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