On Wednesday, September 11, from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, the National Cemetery Administration (NCA) and Carry The Load (CTL) will partner on a national day of service (Headstone/marker cleaning and grounds beautification) at 40 national cemeteries across the country.

Volunteers cleaning headstone

Volunteers clean a headstone during a previous event.

Eighteen years ago, four coordinated attacks against the United States on the morning of September 11 took the lives of 3,000 people, injured over 6,000 others, and destroyed both World Trade Center buildings and severely damaged the Pentagon. Since that time, many others have died from 9/11-related cancers and respiratory illnesses. There is no other single day in our lifetime when Americans from every corner of our nation put every difference aside and embraced one another. September 11 joined Dec. 7 as a “day of infamy” calling forth the resolve of our nation. It was our Pearl Harbor.

And just like after Pearl Harbor, the world did not stop. The stories of heroism and selfless acts of courage inspired us. We remember the numerous police and fire department first responders who rushed in toward danger to save lives in New York; the military and civilian personnel at the Pentagon in Washington D.C.; the courageous group of airline passengers who rushed the cockpit of Flight 93 (“Let’s Roll,”), somewhere over western Pennsylvania, thwarting what was to be another attack on our nation’s capital. For all that was witnessed that day, what came forth was a new group of heroes who met the challenge and saved countless lives.

And since that day, our 9/11 heroes have inspired a new generation of service – one that will forever link first responders and the military. Their humility showcased a new generation, in the mold of every generation before them, who answered the call when freedom was threatened. Like the over 400 first responders of 9/11, many of these young men and women gave their lives for freedom, blazing a path they never had a chance to walk.

Where to volunteer

To honor our men and women buried in VA national cemeteries and commemorate the heroism of September 11, 2001, consider volunteering on this National Day of Service. NCA/CTL National Day of Service Registration:

Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery (Elwood, IL)

Alexandria National Cemetery (Alexandria, VA)

Annapolis National Cemetery (Annapolis, MD)

Baltimore National Cemetery (Catonsville, MD)

Calverton National Cemetery (Calverton, NY)

Cave Hill NC – (Louisville, KY)

Chattanooga National Cemetery (Chattanooga, TN)

Culpeper National Cemetery (Culpeper, VA)

Dayton National Cemetery (Dayton, OH)

DFW National Cemetery (Dallas, TX)

Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery (San Antonio, TX)

Fort Bliss National Cemetery (El Paso, TX)

Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery (F. Leavenworth, KS)

Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery – (San Diego, CA)

Fort Scott National Cemetery (Fort Scott, KS)

Fort Snelling National Cemetery (Minneapolis, MN)

Fort Smith National Cemetery (Fort Smith, AR)

Georgia National Cemetery (Canton, GA)

Golden Gate National Cemetery – (Bruno, CA)

Houston National Cemetery (Houston, TX)

Los Angeles National Cemetery (Los Angeles, CA)

Leavenworth National Cemetery (Leavenworth, KS)

Little Rock National Cemetery (Little Rock, AR)

Marietta National Cemetery (Mariettta, GA.)

Marion National Cemetery (Marion, IN)

Memphis National Cemetery (Memphis, TN)

Miramar National Cemetery – (San Diego, CA)

New Albany NC – (Albany, IN)

Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery (Seville, OH)

Omaha National Cemetery (Omaha, NE)

Philadelphia National Cemetery (Philadelphia, PA)

Prescott National Cemetery (Prescott, AZ)

Quantico National Cemetery (Triangle, VA)

Raleigh National Cemetery (Raleigh, NC)

Sacramento Valley National Cemetery (Dixon, CA)

San Francisco National Cemetery – (San Francisco, CA)

Tahoma National Cemetery (Kent, WA.)

Washington Crossing National Cemetery (Newton, PA)

Wood National Cemetery (Milwaukee, WI)

Zachary Taylor National Cemetery (Louisville, KY)

Congratulations to the 14 new NCA directors!VA Graduates 14 New National Cemetery Directors
Gray's Headstone and Clipping from the Baltimore Sun.Enslaved to Enlisted: Reddy Gray’s Grave is Underground Railroad site

Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

50 Comments

  1. Christian Anderson September 6, 2019 at 7:52 pm

    Here in Nevada we have the Nothern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Reno and the Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City (just south of Las Vegas). Hope you can get them to participate and we can volunteer there!

  2. Jean Walker September 2, 2019 at 8:53 am

    Why isn’t Biloxi, MS Veterans National Cemetary is not on this list?

  3. robert McDermott September 1, 2019 at 6:26 pm

    I really need some help on student loan forgiveness and noticed that it was one of the great things you offered. I must have somehow missed any information explaining what I need to do to get some help. I have a 70% service connected disability for contracting Multiple Sclerosis while serving in Baghdad. Working in the occupation that I was in was causing my nervous system to attack my own body which would cause excruciating pain, primarily along my lower spine. After waking up every morning sometimes in tears, I decided to quit the job in October 2018. I needed to go to Philadelphia where I am from and also knew my mother was there to help me. Now living back in Philadelphia which my mother selflessly donates her time to cook and feed me, do my laundry, cleans the whole house, takes care of my dog and even works every week. The amount I receive from my disability does not leave me any extra money for anything, I haven’t bought anything new in a year, I wear old used clothes or anything else that is free or cost a tiny amount.
    I received a collection letter three days ago that stated they will take any money they can. They stated that they will divert my disability and/or any tax returns I am owed. This would be a worst case scenario which would be devastating.
    Is there anything your organization can do to help me with this horrible financial problem?

    My name is Robert L. McDermott, US Army
    Thank You, Robert L. McDermott

  4. Toni L Falk September 1, 2019 at 12:06 am

    How come there are no events in Florida?

  5. Jack Smith August 30, 2019 at 6:06 pm

    are there any day or time to do the same thing in Normandy, France I visited it this past spring for the
    75 Anniversary of D Day , would love to go back and do the same there?
    thanks again

  6. Leon McLamb August 30, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    Can you volunteer at state veterans cemeteries or does it have to be national cemeteries?

    • Doris J. Durey September 3, 2019 at 9:21 am

      What tools do you need to do this at private or state cemeteries when the national cemetery in your area is not one on the list. some of these markers are much older than the ones on our national cemetery and really could use this service.

  7. Jatinder Kumar Jaswal August 30, 2019 at 12:05 pm

    I would Love.

  8. William Anderson August 29, 2019 at 7:18 pm

    I noticed that there is no W. Va. Cemeteries every mentioned in any events that takes place though out the year for us Veterans!! Would just like to know why we are not every honored??

  9. Don Crauswell August 29, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    The VA must be proud, everyday more Agent Orange Vets are planted in these cemeteries and the the VA Sec. sits on his ass refusing to expand the presumed list to include Bladder Cancer, MGUS and Hypertension, Academy of Science linked these illness’s, they are killing us, but he doesnt give a damn. Mr. President the VA is not fixed.

  10. Karissa Wise August 29, 2019 at 4:47 pm

    I see a lot of comments asking how to register. The link is listed in the article right above the list of cemeteries. Also, if you do not see a cemetery close to you on the list, email contact@carrytheload.org to see if you can help organize a clean up for that specific cemetery. Hope this helps!

    Karissa Wise
    US Navy Veteran

  11. ALFRED WILMOT August 29, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    Is a wall more important than the ones who protected our country, and who have die trying to help others on 9/11 . I was a Marine for over 22 years of my life and if I had my way the Wall would just have to wait, but not my first responders or our fallen veterans.

  12. Angelo Luis Fuentes August 29, 2019 at 12:29 pm

    I was thinking of Pensacola NAS cemetery also to volunteer but I don’t see it listed. I live in Crestview Florida, about 40 minutes from it. Thank you

  13. Stephen C. Herrick August 29, 2019 at 10:47 am

    Count me & My Girlfriend will be there at the Houston Cemetery.

    Stephen C. Herrick, SGT
    US ARMY 2002-2015

  14. Dave Combs August 29, 2019 at 10:31 am

    A lot of people are asking how to sign up. There is a link at the top of the list of cemeteries, under the bold “Where to volunteer” header. The blue link text is “NCA/CTL National Day of Service Registration:”

  15. gay lynch August 29, 2019 at 10:12 am

    what type of cleaning equipment and cleaning solutions are being used? veterans’ tombstones in local cemeteries could be cleaned as well.

  16. Christi Millsap August 29, 2019 at 9:49 am

    Biloxi, MS National Cemetery is also not participating? I cannot travel to Memphis, TN! :(

  17. Don Warlick August 29, 2019 at 9:45 am

    I noticed that the National Cemetery in Salisbury, NC is not on your list. Do you know why this is?

  18. Takeo Ishimasa August 29, 2019 at 9:42 am

    Poorly prepared release. Need to specifically and clearly state how to volunteer rather than burying it in the text. Some may not know to click on the BLUE TEXT. at the end of the sentence.
    Also, agree that this effort should include all military/veteran cemeteries.

  19. I don’t think you need a list of cemeteries to volunteer. If you see a cemetery that needs attention, contact the administrator of that cemetery and volunteer your services and if you know others in the area that would like to volunteer create your own team and just do it. You don’t need a special marked day to volunteer your services anywhere. I’m sure all the veterans in the area would love to see everyone’s willingness to help wherever they can.

  20. Joesph McGrath August 29, 2019 at 9:27 am

    Would love to do but do not see Beverly National Cemetery not listing as participating. My siblings and I donated my Dad’s Burial Flag to the Avenue of the Flags at Beverly and there is never any follow up on the program or special events.
    Joseph McGrath Sr.

    • Charles Thomas Cooper August 30, 2019 at 1:58 am

      Pamela, I couldn’t agree with you more. I don’t see a cemetery listed in my area of Missouri, but I know there are veterans buried in the local cemeteries. Let us take the incentive and organize a local effort. What a wonderful way to make others aware of the sacrifice and selflessness of those who gave all for our freedom!

      Tom Cooper, Missouri

  21. Bruce Robert Mendelsohn August 29, 2019 at 9:22 am

    No cemeteries in New England? Shameful. I’m certainly ready, willing, and able to coordinate a group in any of the cemeteries in Massachusetts.

    • Alison M Hansen August 29, 2019 at 1:01 pm

      Absolutely! I live right near the Veterans cemetery in WMass and would have my kiddos and me there in a heartbeat!

    • Stephanie L Moore August 30, 2019 at 8:43 am

      Good Morning Jim,

      It would be helpful if the criteria for cemetery selection was explained and would probably defer many of these comments. I am wondering if you have a selection method? For example New England done in 2018 so they are not being done in 2019. I too was disappointed when I saw Boscawen, NH was not on the list but didn’t want to jump to any conclusions as to why. If there is a way that I can assist with coordinating this location with your group please let me know I would be more than happy.

      Semper Fi!
      Stephanie Moore
      USMC 1988-1994

  22. Brandon Wainwright August 29, 2019 at 9:19 am

    Do you think Louisiana National Cemetery could be included? I have some Veteran Brothers buried there and I have about 15-20 other people who agreed to volunteer at the same cemetery if it could be added. Thank you for thinking about it in advanced.

  23. Rod Covington August 29, 2019 at 9:14 am

    I completed the online volunteer form but it was rejected. Any other way I could register?

  24. Richard Freihofer August 29, 2019 at 9:13 am

    I’m disappointed that there is no site listed for Florida. I know there is a veteran’s cemetery in Bushnell, FL. Is there no interest in honoring those veterans?

  25. Grace LaMarre August 29, 2019 at 8:42 am

    Any Cemeteries in New Jersey? I would LOVE to help

  26. David Wilson August 29, 2019 at 7:27 am

    There are veteran markers and memorial across the nation that need cleaning and attention. Those locations are no less honorable than national cemeteries, and the veterans buried at those locations are no less honored. There needs to be no photograph opportunity to serve and preserve the memory of our veterans. Volunteerism has no better reward than to have served a good deed without recognition. If you can not make it to some national cemetery location, your service is needed right down the street.

  27. Bob Koury August 29, 2019 at 6:23 am

    Hi-
    Unclear how to volunteer. Just show up? Bring cleaning gear?
    Thanks,
    Bob Koury
    _____________________________________

    • gin o August 29, 2019 at 10:04 am

      If you would like to participate, please register below. If you would like to organize a volunteer day on behalf of Carry The Load at a National Cemetery near you, email contact@carrytheload.org.

  28. Dan Carter August 29, 2019 at 5:01 am

    I would be honored to help. I am a disabled Viet Nam vet and have been granted a rich life since Viet Nam, over 50 years ago. Please tell me how I can humbly serve my Nation today. Grateful for the gift of life.

  29. Lydia Morgenstern August 29, 2019 at 4:45 am

    Why aren’t all 135 National Cemeteries included? Why only 40? I would volunteer but I live in Florida and the Florida cemeteries arent part of this.

    • Michael Montgomery August 29, 2019 at 5:16 am

      Same for Alabama, Lydia. This could be coordinated better.

    • Jackie Fresta August 29, 2019 at 6:51 am

      me too! I live in Florida and would also like to contribute!

    • Michael & Beverly Chambers August 29, 2019 at 8:29 am

      Would love to participate but live in Florida, any chance of that no sites listed for Florida.

    • Lourdes Serrano August 29, 2019 at 9:01 am

      Same here I’m in Tampa area and my entire group would love to volunteer

    • john e. hickey iii August 29, 2019 at 9:23 am

      Please count Michigan in as well – Fort Custer National Cemetery, Battle Creek

  30. Bruce MacKender August 29, 2019 at 3:40 am

    I live in the Portland, Oregon area and would like to volunteer at the Willamette National Cemetery but it is not on the list. Is there a reason for this? Can we add it to this list? I would like to help anyway possible.

  31. Benjamin Dominic Kanner August 29, 2019 at 12:21 am

    I would be honored for the first time to help out at the Prescott AZ National Cemetery on September 11. Please send me a POC.

    Respectfully,
    Ben Kanner
    US Navy Veteran

  32. Michael Rosenberg August 28, 2019 at 11:53 pm

    I would like to volunteer, I’m a disabled veteran but would be honored to participate at the fort Snelling Cemetzry. I’m Michael Rosenberg. I’m a Minneapolis resident

  33. Herb A. Paul August 28, 2019 at 11:00 pm

    Count me in for the National Cemetery in Dallas, TX

  34. Herb A. Paul August 28, 2019 at 10:59 pm

    Count me in for the National Cemetery in Dallas.
    Herb Paul, Captain
    USAF 1948-1956, Texas Air National Guard 1956- 1959

  35. Gardiner L Schneider August 28, 2019 at 9:15 pm

    Does this day of service also happen at the Togus, Maine cemetery?

  36. Larry West August 28, 2019 at 9:03 pm

    Is there reason all VA cemeteries are not listed, such as Amelia Va and Suffolk Va.

  37. Gena E Cameron August 28, 2019 at 8:41 pm

    I like Carry the Day and cleaning headstones. Wish you had this project in Idaho and Florida. Good gesture though. Thank you. I live in Florida and would go clean and my 100% disabled husband (agent orange) is in Idaho. Would be good for my son to go out there. Keep up the good work.

  38. David Adams August 28, 2019 at 8:13 pm

    Unfortunate that Sarasota National in Florida is not participating.

    • Lydia Morgenstern August 29, 2019 at 4:46 am

      I’m also disappointed Sarasota is not included.

      • J G August 29, 2019 at 3:12 pm

        I’m hoping to just contact the cemetery directly to volunteer. Hope this helps.

Comments are closed.