GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – A group of concerned Grand Prairie citizens spent part of Veterans Day bringing attention to an old cemetery where dozens of mostly black veterans are buried, some in unmarked graves.
There are as many as 90 veterans buried at Antioch Life Park Cemetery on the other side of Mountain Creek Lake from DFW National Cemetery.
Despite that short distance, the difference between the way veterans are honored in the two cemeteries is stark.
At Antioch Life Park Cemetery, they are the forgotten heroes of a generation.
Veterans from World War I through Vietnam are buried there.
Some have headstones that are fading or overrun with grass.
Other veterans that are documented to have been buried there don’t have one at all.
On Wednesday, Nov. 11, a group led by Feed A Million Veterans and the Grand Prairie chapter of the NAACP took on the task of cleaning headstones and placing American flags next to those who served.
The owner of the cemetery, Thom Aldredge, said he receives no local state or federal money that’s needed to maintain it.
Aldredge, along with volunteers, said these veterans deserve the first-class treatment that thousands of former military service men and women receive at DFW National Cemetery.
“I sometimes wonder are they forgotten because they are black veterans? And that part right there just saddens my heart because these are people that went to the front of the line,” said Angela Luckey of the Grand Prairie NAACP. “These are the people that if it had not been for them, there’s no telling what America would really look like today.”
There is an online fundraising account to help the cemetery’s maintenance. Replacing the aging gravesites of military veterans with higher quality, uniform headstones will take a lot of donations.
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