Unclaimed veterans buried in N.Y. with full honors

Sunday, January 9, 2011
Members of a military honor guard fold the American flag that draped one of the 20 U.S. military veterans' caskets whose remains were unclaimed during their burial ceremony Saturday at Calverton National Cemetery in Calverton, N.Y. The ceremony, sponsored by the Dignity Memorial Network, has provided services for more than 850 veterans since its inception in 2000. (Mary Altaffer ~ Associated Press)

GARDEN CITY, N.Y. -- A New York cemetery has held a mass funeral for 20 military veterans whose remains were never claimed.

They were buried Saturday with full military honors at Calverton National Cemetery on eastern Long Island.

All of them died recently. No one claimed their remains.

The Department of Veterans Affairs said the service is part of a national effort to clear a backlog of unburied or unclaimed veterans' remains.

A folded flag from each coffin was handed to mourners standing in for absent relatives. They included members of Gold Star Mothers, a group of parents who lost their children in the military.

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