- Associated Press - Friday, September 22, 2017

GALLUP, N.M. (AP) - Gallup is getting its own veterans cemetery after a multi-million-dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.

U.S. Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich along with Rep. Ben Ray Lujan said Friday that the grant of $6.7 million will fund construction.

The closest veterans’ cemetery is in Santa Fe, some 200 miles away.

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Lawmakers say a national veterans’ cemetery in Gallup will provide more convenient access to 19,000 vets and their families.

The grant will cover 443 pre-placed crypts, 140 in-ground cremation gravesites, 400 columbarium niches, a memorial wall and walkway and other aspects of the cemetery.

It’s unclear when construction begins.

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