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State Veterans Cemetery in Williamstown Earns Highest Score in Nation


After a meticulous two-day inspection by the National Cemetery Administration (NCA), Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North (KVCN) scored 96 – the highest score of any state veterans cemetery in the country.

“The very highest standards are what we strive to reach every day,” said Benjamin Adams, Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs, which operates five state veterans cemeteries in Kentucky. “NCA standards are exacting and their inspectors famously strict. To achieve this highest score in the nation is an enormous accomplishment.”

“Congratulations to KVCN Director Cathy Taylor and all of her staff for their exceptional work,” added Adams.

A team of inspectors from NCA visited KVCN on July 24-25. Five highly trained professionals skilled in all aspects of cemetery operations examined KVCN to ensure the cemetery is operating in compliance with the rigorous NCA guidelines.

They reviewed KVCN in five critical areas: interment operations; grounds maintenance; headstone, markers and niche cover maintenance; equipment maintenance; and other operational standards. They measured the cemetery’s performance on each of the 93 applicable standards using a combination of documentation review, in-person interviews of cemetery staff, visual inspection, and a statistical sampling of gravesites.

Based on the results of the on-site review, the cemetery earned 89 points out of a possible 93 for an overall compliance percentage of 96%. Based on NCA’s compliance measurement criteria, the cemetery was found to be compliant with the terms and conditions of its VA cemetery grant awards.

After this inspection, KVCN currently sits as the top-rated State Veteran Cemetery in the country for 2019.

KVCN was dedicated in August 2008. Most of the staff has been working at KVCN since that day.

“The cemetery’s staff stability and dedication is directly reflected in these positive results,” said Al Duncan, KDVA’s Director of Cemetery Services.

The staff includes:

•Cathy Taylor, Director

•Chris Hammonds, Maintenance Superintendent

•Elizabeth King, Administrative Specialist III

•Jerry Morris, Caretaker II

•Devin Hurley, Caretaker II

•Roger Sturdivant Temp Caretaker

For more information about Kentucky's State Veterans Cemeteries, visit http://veterans.ky.gov/cemeteries

(provided by Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs)

Paul Hitchcock earned his Masters in Communications from Morehead State University and Bachelors in Radio-TV/Psychology from Georgetown College. A veteran broadcaster for more than 40 years and an avid fan of blues, jazz and American roots music. Hitchcock has been with WMKY since 1986 and was named General Manager in 2003. He currently hosts "Muddy Bottom Blues" (Fri., 8pm-9pm), "Nothin' But The Blues" (Sat., 8pm-12am), "Sunday Night Jazz Showcase" and "Live From The Jazz Lounge" (Sun., 8pm-9pm) and "The Golden Age of Radio" (Sun., 2pm-3pm). He also serves as producer for "A Time For Tales" and "The Reader's Notebook."
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