SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WALA) - Alabama's state veteran's cemetery in Spanish Fort plans to hold a dedication ceremony on December 7, Pearl Harbor Day.
Officials said the construction work at the site is about 90 percent complete.
"It seems like it goes real fast to begin with, and then toward the end it really slows down because of all the finishing touches you have to put on it," said Director of the Alabama Veterans Memorial Cemetery at Spanish Fort Tony Ross.
The Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs said it is putting on its own finishing touches for the December 7 dedication, which will include guest speakers and public tours of the grounds starting at 10 a.m.
Ross, who used to be a supervisor at the National Cemetery in Montevallo, was named director of the Spanish Fort cemetery in July 2012.
"I think it's a beautiful place. This is a very beautiful area of the state. When we get it all completed, it's going to be one of the best cemeteries and we're going to strive to make it the best cemetery," said Ross.
Ross said the cemetery has four areas for memorials, one of which is called a scatter field where loved ones can literally scatter ashes in a garden and have the love one's name placed on a nearby memorial wall.
Alabama Veterans Memorial Cemetery remains a construction site for now and limits the public's up-close view of the grounds.
Ross said burials will likely begin in March 2013, after several other tasks are complete.
He said workers need to be hired and trained, a second survey performed, an engineer will map plots and that map will then by entered into a software program.
When they do begin accepting applications, paperwork will have to be filed and eligibility met.
Ross plans to implement a pre-registration program for burials that allows families time to fill out paperwork before a funeral and could alleviate some stress.
The Alabama Veterans Memorial Cemetery has about 2,700 plots. Ross said that should accommodate burials for 10 years before an expansion is needed.
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