The Missing - Unknown Soldiers
Ardennes American Cemetery
TEL: (32) 18.104.22.168
FAX: (32) 41.72.03.29
Submitted by Fred Hinson
The Missing, of which there are 462, have their names and particulars engraved in 12 large slabs of gray granite located on the east and west sides of the memorial. An asterisk denotes those whose remains were subsequently recovered and positively identified. They have been interred either overseas or repatriated to the United States at the request of family. Above these names this inscription is engraved upon the sides of the memorial: "HERE ARE RECORDED THE NAMES OF AMERICANS WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN THE SERVICE OF THEIR COUNTRY AND WHO SLEEP IN UNKNOWN GRAVES 1941-1945."
The graves area is reached from the base of the memorial podium by a flight of broad steps. Here are buried 5,328 of our military Dead: three-fifths of whom were airmen.
These Dead, who gave their lives in our country's service, came from almost every State in the Union as well as from the District of Columbia. Canada, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Ireland, the Philippine Islands, and the British West Indies. Seven hundred seventy-seven headstones mark the graves of 792 "Unknowns." Among the headstones are 11 instances in which two brothers are buried side by side. There are also three cases in which two identified airmen are buried in single graves. Stars of David mark the graves of those who professed the Jewish faith and Latin crosses all others.
At the east end of the central transverse path is a bronze figure symbolizing American youth.
The plantings which complement the natural woodland frame of the site include stately lindens, black and white pine as well as the horse-chestnut alignment trees. The memorial is flanked by massifs of pyracantha bordered by red roses with dwarf boxwood edging, and backed by purple beech hedges.
The arms adjacent to the huge cross formed by the headstone pattern are planted with groups of oak, beech, Hornbeam and tulip trees intended to extend the natural woodland enframement. The entire burial area is surrounded by wide borders of shrub roses.
The architeets for the cemetery and memorial were Reinhard, Hofmeister & Walquist of New York City. The landscape architect was Richard K. Weber of Roslyn, Long Island. The sculptures are the design of C. Paul Jennewein, while the battle maps were designed by Dean Cornwell.
Construction of the cemetery was completed in 1960 and a dedication ceremony was held on 11 July that same year in the presence of his Royal Highness Prince Albert of Belgium.