Also, be sure to check out the visitor’s center which was newly redone in 2014. The staff there are happy to answer questions and there are some great exhibits about World War II. To start, there is a short introductory film. For all you history lovers, there are also touch-screen kiosks where you can learn more about the Battle of the Atlantic, the Strategic Bombing Campaign, and the story of Americans in Great Britain during World War II.
In the back of the visitor center, you can read the stories of a few of those that are buried or memorialized at the cemetery. One of those featured was Joseph P. Kennedy Jr., Lieutenant, U.S. Navy Reserve, the brother of the late President John F. Kennedy. On August 12, 1944, his plane exploded while on a mission from England against a German rocket site in France. His name is on the Wall of the Missing. I was really moved by reading the stories that they shared about some of the missing and dead. It just made me think about all the individuals that have made the ultimate sacrifice.
The chapel is at the other end of the mall from the visitor’s center. The doors are quite impressive, I really liked the military artwork. At first, we weren’t sure if it was open because we had a little trouble with the door. The chapel itself is small with impressive artwork throughout, even some on the ceiling. The map on the wall was informative and artistic as well. There were also windows with the names of each state. We took a few minutes to locate the Texas one.
Visiting the Cambridge American Cemetery was a very moving experience. When you think of what the families went through it just tugs at your heart. And to put things in perspective, the Cambridge American Cemetery pales in size compared to Arlington National Cemetery where 400,000 are buried. I haven’t had a chance to visit Arlington Memorial Cemetery yet, but hopefully on my next trip to Washington DC.
Especially with Memorial Day coming up, I would love to hear how you show your appreciation to those that have served their country.
- The Cambridge American Cemetery is not accessible by public transportation, so you will need to either drive or take a taxi.
- Don’t miss the individual stories at the back of the visitor’s center, I found them very moving.
- There is no admission charge and the cemetery is open from 9am to 5pm daily except for Christmas and New Year’s Day.
- While you are in Cambridge, you should also try punting on the Cam.