Abrupt Funeral Ending At The National Cemetery - And Response (2)

Saturday, May 17, 2014

I would like to thank all the readers who read and commented on the obituary piece I wrote for my brother, Kenneth Stephens. Some things that happen don't need explaining, especially a godly thing.

Today I would like to share another experience with you all that took place in  the National Cemetery at my brother's funeral. After the 21-gun salute and the Taps, his service started. The pastor was delivering the eulogy when all of a sudden the funeral director from the National Cemetery tugged on his shirt sleeve in the middle of a sentence, absolutely causing him to lose all concentration. Then he was told let's go, we have to get moving.

I was shocked this was happening at my brother's funeral. When the pastor delivered his message I was supposed to speak over my brother's body at which time I was going to deliver the band of brothers story I had written. My nephew was going to say a few words as well. Much to our surprise the body was whisked away at the cemetery representative's request.

Needless to say, the next day I was at National Cemetery's doorstep demanding answers. I was told there is a 30-minute maximum on all funeral services,which would have been nice to know before the service started. I have three other family members buried there and never encountered this problem.

I thought I would share this with your readers so this doesn't happen to them. Lane Funeral Home Ashland Terrace did a wonderful job with their part, and I felt moved to publish a band of brothers in the obituary to share with your readers since I didn't get to say it over his body.

Ricky Stephens

* * * 

In January, 2007, we buried my father in the National Cemetery, and we had no time restrictions placed on the service at all.  

It sure seems like in the last few years that our government no longer cherishes those who have served and sometimes died for our country.  A great many Americans and I appreciate your brother's service to our country, and I wish our government's bureaucrats would share our appreciation - at the National Cemetery, the Veteran's Administration, and other government agencies. 

William Parker 

* * * 

My sympathy to Mr Stephens. I have had similar experiences of inconsiderate behavior by Chattanooga National Cemetery personnel. 

I have been saddened and disappointed by their haughty and imperious attitudes and in once instance utter disregard for Jewish religious funeral traditions. 

The men and women interred in the Chattanooga National Cemetery are there because they have done their service to their country. It shouldn't be too much trouble for the cemetery administration to act like they appreciated it. 

Steve Campbell
McDonald, Tn.


Roy Exum: A Very Silly Apology

It didn’t get a lot of attention, as well it should not have, but when I heard Japanese giant Mitsubishi was offered an apology for heinous war crimes that took place during World War II, I thought it was an ill-conceived publicity stunt. But, no, in a solemn ceremony last month hosted by the Museum of Tolerance at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, that is exactly what ... (click for more)

How To Be #ChattanoogaStrong

Chattanooga is my home; I was born here 35 years ago. Without a doubt, this has been one of the most challenging times in our city's history. The #ChattanoogaStrong hashtag will remain for quite some time, but it means so much more than 18 characters on social media. It represents the sorrow and mourning, as well as the resilience and compassion, of our exceptional community.  ... (click for more)

Truck Driver Who Caused Wreck That Killed 6 People At Ooltewah Indicted On 13 Charges; Report Says He Drove Excessive Hours

The Chattanooga Police Department has issued a capias for the arrest of Benjamin Brewer, 39, concerning the multiple fatality traffic crash that occurred on I-75 northbound on June 25. Brewer was indicted on Monday on 13 counts.  They include six counts of vehicular homicide by impairment, a B-felony; four counts for reckless aggravated assault, a D-felony; one count for DUI ... (click for more)

Rawls Says Schools Could Have Better Spent $16,000 Than For Motivational Speech; County To Explore Performance Guaranteed Utility Contract

Bradley County Commissioner Dan Rawls said three school systems could have better spent $16,000 than for a motivational speaker to fire teachers up at the start of a new school year. He said the payment to Ron Clark, former National Teacher of the Year and the founder of the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, could have gone for school supplies and other needs. Bradley County ... (click for more)

NPSL Championship To Be Played In Chattanooga

It's Chattanooga FC taking on the New York Cosmos B for the National Premier Soccer League’s national championship and the Scenic City's Finley Stadium is the site Saturday, August 8 at 7:30 p.m. Thanks to a 9,000 plus crowd at Chattanooga's 3-0 semifinal win against the Indiana Fire, the Tennessee team broke the league’s previous record of 8,878, which was ... (click for more)

Jones Press Conference Kicks Off Vols' Preseason

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Coach Butch Jones held his preseason football press conference on Monday at Neyland Stadium. Jones heads into his third season with visible enthusiasm after the Vols finished off the 2014 season with an impressive win over Iowa in the TaxSlayer Bowl, following that up with another nationally ranked recruiting class. "In terms of our football team, we ... (click for more)