The lush and well-tended grounds bespeak the honor and respect that the nation owes its veterans, many of whom fell in battle.
But for months, the cemetery has had large unsightly patches of dead or dying grass amid the 77 acres of graves.
A series of problems have caused large areas to be left with grass that is brown and wilting and altogether unsightly. In some areas, the problem is a broken irrigation system, in others the grass was intentionally killed to allow for a grave realignment.
“We’re sincerely apologetic for any discomfort we’ve caused the families,” said Bradley Phillips, an executive director for memorial services at the Department of Veterans Affairs. “We’re working very hard to bring the cemetery up to shrine standards.”
Some of the areas will be green again by August, but others will take months, he said.
The apparent slowness of the repairs has upset some family members, like Jill Millard, whose son, 22-year-old Army Cpl. Gregory Millard, was killed in Iraq in 2007.