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Veterans Hope For Deal To Expand Jefferson Barracks

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)
War veterans salute as an American flag passes by during Memorial Day services at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis on May 30, 2011.

Local veterans say they're hopeful that a deal can be worked out to expand Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.

Credit (UPI file photo)
Local veterans are lobbying for the expansion of Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in south St. Louis County. Officials say the cemetery, which dates back to 1826, could be full by 2025.

The cemetery in south St. Louis County was established in 1826 and veterans groups say it could be filled by 2025. They've asked local politicians and governments to support giving nearby Sylvan Springs Park to the federal government for an expansion of Jefferson Barracks.

Mike LeBlanc is a Vietnam War veteran who helped coordinate the lobbying efforts.

"My grandpa is buried there," LeBlanc said. "My dad is buried there. My father-in-law is buried there. I've got two brothers-in-law buried there. I've got many, many close friends buried there. So, that's where I should be buried also. And then when we talk about our sons and daughters who have served during current conflicts, where are they going to go?"

Last week, St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley, also a veteran, said he supports giving Sylvan Springs Park to the federal government. But the two entities still have to agree on a purchase and transfer price.

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