No Greater Love Memorials at Arlington National Cemetery

The only organization in history that has dedicated more than one memorial at Arlington National Cemetery. No Greater Love has dedicated Ten!

Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, contains the remains of more than 400,000 people from the United States and 11 other countries, buried there since the 1860s. An average of 25 burials are performed each day. Arlington National Cemetery covers 624 acres of land. More than three million people visit the cemetery annually.

“They say, we leave you our deaths. Give them their meaning. Give them an end to war and a true peace. We were young, they say. We have died. Remember us.”

El Salvador 1996

Learn More

Honoring those who died during the Civil War in El Salvador
Section 12
Dedicated: May 5, 1996

When civil war broke out in El Salvador, the United States provided economics and military aid to the Salvadoran government in order to help curb violent conflict. In 1992, a peace agreement was signed ending the war.

How The Memorial Came About

In October 1995, No Greater Love dedicated a memorial to the Special Operations Forces. After the dedication ceremony, several Special Operations Officers asked Carmella to remember those who died in El Salvador with a memorial.

On May 5, 1996, No Greater Love dedicated a memorial in Section 12 of Arlington National Cemetery to honor the Americans who died in El Salvador’s Civil War. Section 12 was chosen as the site since this is where Lieutenant Colonel David H. Pickett, one of the U.S. Servicemen killed in El Salvador’s Civil War is buried.

“There is a need for a country like ours to have people willing to give their lives, if needed, so men can be free. I do say that it gives you an appreciation for what we have as a people and what other people want. It also reaffirms my belief that military people want war least of all because we have the most to lose. But, if there has to be war, we (the true soldier) will march to the sound of the guns, so we can end it as quickly as possible.”

– Dave Pickett
Killed in El Salvador

Special Operations Forces

Learn More

Honoring America’s Special Operations Forces
Section 46
Dedicated: October 15, 1995

The memorial was dedicated to honor all U.S. Special Operations Forces who spearheaded the defense of the United States before there was a nation. It paid special tribute to the services and sacrifices made by Navy SEAL teams, Air Force Carpetbaggers, Air Commando Groups, Marine Raiders, Special Boats Units, 8240th Detachment and Alamo Scouts.

How The Memorial Came About

Carmella had friends who were Navy SEALs and told them of her idea of having a memorial in tribute to U.S. Special Forces — they were 100% in favor of this endeavor. So she went full speed ahead.

Somalia 1994

Learn More

Honoring those who died in Operation Restore Hope in Somalia 1992-1995
Section 60
Dedicated: October 3, 1994

When Somalia descended into a brutal civil war in 1991, the Somali people desperately needed the world’s help. More than 300,000 Somalis died of starvation and violence. The world took notice and acted.

How The Memorial Came About

A multinational force arrived to end the starvation. Relief organizations from around the world supplied food, medicine, aid and comfort to those that were suffering, which saved at least one million Somali lives according to one estimate. In August 1992, the U.S. launched a military airlift to deliver food to sites in Somalia. U.S. soldiers first came ashore in December, 1992, leading a multinational military coalition that began moving food and medical assistance to the ravaged countryside.

The memorial was dedicated in 1994 honoring the 18 brave Americans who died in Somalia including two Medal of Honor recipients, MSG Gary Gordon and SFC Randy Shughart. It is an eternal reminder of the sacrifices made to help the suffering people in Somalia. This memorial is a symbol of remembrance and hope.

World War II 1991

Learn More

Honoring those who died in World War II
Section 30
Dedicated: December 8, 1991

How The Memorial Came About

In May 1974, when General Omar Bradley agreed to be No Greater Love’s Honorary Chairman, he said to Carmella, “How unfortunate that No Greater Love wasn’t around to comfort the children of those Americans who died in World War II.” Carmella promised him that NGL would do something for them, someday. In December 1990, the Parade Magazine cover story on NGL started a flow of letters from World War II “Gold Star” orphans. Through these letters, NGL became even more aware of the deep feelings of these forgotten sons and daughters of World War II casualties and their families.

In response to this outpouring of sentiment, NGL decided to have a memorial dedication at Arlington National Cemetery on December 8, 1991, marking the 50th Anniversary of the United States entry into World War II. This dedication was planned as a living memorial not only to those Americans who died in World War II but also for all their loved ones they left behind.

The question was how to reach all the children and families of World War II casualties throughout the country. Walter Anderson, then Editor of Parade, graciously agreed to place an announcement in Parade about No Greater Love’s “So Proudly We Hail” Memorial Dedication Ceremony. The result of that announcement was that hundreds of families gathered at the ceremony to share in this special, historic occasion.

After meeting other sons and daughters of fallen troops at the tribute, an only son who lost his father in WWII said, “This is the first time in 45 years I don’t feel so alone.” From this event, these honored guests formed the organization, Orphans of World War II.

Section 30, the site for the ceremony was selected because it is the resting place of General Omar Bradley, the Honorary Chairman of No Greater Love, and many other WWII warriors.

Vietnam War

Learn More

Honoring those who died in the Vietnam War
Section 28
Dedicated: November 10, 1991

The Vietnam War was known as the “Longest War” prior to Afghanistan and claimed the lives of over 58,000 Americans and more than two million Vietnamese.

How The Memorial Came About

When Carmella spoke to a few of her friends who were Vietnam Veterans they requested No Greater Love to have a memorial stone in Arlington National Cemetery where many of their buddies are buried and rest in honored glory in Section 28 in ANC, where the NGL memorial was dedicated.

World War I 1989

Learn More

Honoring those who died in World War I
Section 34
Dedicated: November 10, 1989

How This Ceremony Came About

The idea for this memorial came on July 4, 1989, during a Veterans Salute at a Phillies baseball game in Philadelphia at Veterans Stadium. Two World War I Veterans, Gardner Smith and Richard Carmicheal, threw out the first balls.

After the Salute, co-sponsored by NGL, the Eastern Paralyzed Veterans Association, and the Philadelphia Phillies, the WWI veterans told Carmella this was the “biggest” recognition they had received since their WWI Homecoming in 1918.

The next day, Carmella called Ray Constanzo, Superintendent of ANC, and learned that there was no memorial in the cemetery for the Americans who died in WWI. She wanted to establish a memorial to assure the approximately 108,000 WWI vets still living that they and their buddies would never be forgotten.

The memorial is a reflection in stone of the sad truth that the liberties we enjoy were preserved for us by the pain, suffering, and the death of thousands of brave souls. No Greater Love honored the men who served the cause of freedom in WWI by planting an evergreen tree and dedicating a memorial stone in Arlington National Cemetery 75 years after the end of WWI.

Pershing Hill in Section 34 of ANC was chosen as the site for this memorial because the Commander of the American Expeditionary Forces, General John J. Pershing is buried there, beneath a simple tombstone alongside 2000 of his troops, including two Would War I Medal of Honor recipients. This is also the site where the Veterans of WWI held a ceremony every year on Veterans Day. The tribute was organized by WWI Veteran Colonel Harold F. Ogden, who at 93 years old helped dedicate the NGL memorial. Colonel Ogden served as an Aide de Camp to General Pershing in WWI.

Korean War 1987

Learn More

Dedication of a Meditation Bench honoring those who died in the Korean War
Next to the Amphitheater
Dedicated: July 27, 1987

How This Memorial Came About

During a visit to ANC, Carmella asked Ray Costanzo, the ANC Superintendent, where the Korean War Memorial was located. He informed her the only memorial was a Korean White Pine Tree, planted in 1965 by former Korean President Park Chung Hee, in honor of the Americans and those from our Allied Nations who died in the Korean War. Carmella then found out that there had been no national ceremony to remember these men.

Known as the Forgotten War, to ensure it would no longer be forgotten, NGL then began planning the First International Tribute to honor these men, with the dedication of a memorial meditation bench, designed by Korean-American architect IK Pyo, with the support of the Korean War Veterans Association (KWVA). Bob Thomas, of Columbia Gardens, donated the stone for the memorial.

When Carmella asked a number of Korean War Veterans what flower they would like to place on the bench in honor of their buddies who died, they answered “Mums.” She asked them why they chose this flower and they replied “because people were Mum about the war”

War Correspondents 1986

Learn More

Honoring War Correspondents
Section 46
Dedicated: October 7, 1995

How This Memorial Came About

In February, at an event CNN correspondent Peter Arnett and Carmella, came up with an idea of a memorial to honor the brave war correspondents who died in the line of duty. 

They organized a 12-member Remembrance and Reunion Committee for a War Correspondents Remembrance Weekend on October 7-8 in Washington D.C.

One of the early advocates of a War Correspondents Reunion was former Overseas Press Club President H.L. Stevenson who died in March, 1995. Stevenson had earlier asked Carmella to do some sort of a reunion, after attending a Remembrance Ceremony NGL held for those who died in World War II.

As more World War II Correspondents died, a new urgency was added to the effort to gather together the old warhorses and the young stallions to strengthen the bond of the journalistic transition, from ‘’the war I covered to the war you covered.’’ It was the largest gathering of war correspondents ever assembled. One of them traveled from England to be part of this historic gathering.

The human spirit that leads men and women to cover wars also leads them to keep their ability to laugh, to help them survive. At the event, they remembered their friends who had fallen and whose spirit still lives. They gathered to smile and to laugh once again, and were reminded why they all share a special bond.

Victims of Terrorism 1984

Learn More

Honoring victims of the Beirut Bombing and of terrorism throughout the world.
Section 59
Dedicated: October 23, 1984

October 23, 1984, was selected as the day for the dedication of a memorial stone and Cedar of Lebanon Tree. On this day in 1983, 297 members of a peace-keeping mission were killed by terrorists in Beirut, Lebanon, including 241 American servicemen. Retired Navy Captain John Knipple, father of U.S. Marine Corporal James Knipple, who was killed in the Beirut Bombing, participated in the planting of the Cedar of Lebanon Tree on Loyalty Day, May, 1984.

How This Memorial Came About

A Time of Remembrance began as a project to reach out to the families of the fallen in Beirut. It quickly grew into a much larger effort. After conducting extensive research, it was discovered that no one had ever commemorated the victims of terrorism. NGL then decided to sponsor the first ever international commemoration.

When the idea was presented, the experts advised against it. Some said, “You can’t do it, it’s too sensitive an issue. One person’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter.” NGL persevered to comfort the families of the fallen. The remembrance tribute was a success. The dedication ceremony included children from 82 countries.

No Greater Love selected this site because victims of the Beirut Bombing are buried here.

POW-MIAs 1983

Learn More

Honoring all Prisoners of War and those still Missing in Action
Section 33
Next to the Amphitheater
Dedicated: April 9, 1983

April 9, 1983
Congress designated April 9, 1983 as National POW-MIA Recognition Day, a day dedicated to all those who were prisoners of war and those still missing. On April 9, 1942, during World War II, the largest number of Americans ever captured in our nation’s history were taken prisoner in the Philippine Islands. Thousands of Americans, military and civilian, began the “Bataan Death March” that day. Approximately 650 American POWs died before they could reach their destination at Camp O’Donnell and 1,500 died of brutality, disease and starvation.

Former POWs and families of MIAs from WWII to Vietnam were present at the dedication including Colonel Ruby Bradley, a former Army nurse, a POW in the Philippines during WWII.

How This Memorial Came About

No Greater Love was very involved with the POWs-MIAs during the Vietnam War. We realized there was no memorial at Arlington National Cemetery dedicated to the memory of the POWs-MIAs from all our wars. This was the first No Greater Love memorial dedicated at Arlington.

Gulf War 1992

Learn More

Honoring those who died in Operation Desert Shield, Desert Storm, and Provide Comfort
Section 60
Dedicated: February 28, 1992

How This Ceremony Came To Be

In 1991, President George Bush announced the end of the hostilities in the Gulf War, in which approximately 400 American families lost a loved one in the war. NGL dedicated a memorial stone and tree in remembrance of those who died in Operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm, or Provide Comfort. The Embassy of Kuwait’s generous support made it possible to have families of the fallen be part of a Remembrance Weekend which they had co-sponsored with NGL for over 20 years.

Section 60 was the site for the ceremony which is the resting place of casualties of the Gulf War.

Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm

On August 2, 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait, quickly overran the country and soon after announced a “merger” of Kuwait with Iraq. The U.S and the United Nations took a number of economic steps intended to reverse this aggression. When these achieved no reversal of the Iraqi conquest of Kuwait, the U.S. led an allied coalition in a two-part operation: Desert Shield (August 7, 1990-January 16, 1991) included the assembly of a large multinational force in Saudi Arabia and nearby areas; and Desert Storm (January 17-February 28, 1991), a six-week air and naval campaign against military and industrial targets in Iraq followed by a four-day ground offensive, supported by the air and naval actions, that liberated Kuwait.

Operation Provide Comfort

Following the Persian Gulf War, many thousands of Kurds who lived in Northern Iraq fled their homes and villages into the mountains of northern Iraq and southern Turkey. Almost 500,000 Kurds faced disease, starvation, and death in the cold spring of 1991. Operation Provide Comfort was implemented in March, 1991, to provide humanitarian aid to these refugees and saved thousands of lives. Operation Provide Comfort continues to provide protection for the Kurds and prevent further exodus into the mountains.