Dozens of abandoned veteran remains found at Middle Village crematory get proper burial

Photos courtesy of U.S. Columbarium

The abandoned remains of 26 veterans are now exactly where they should be thanks to the work of the U.S. Columbarium in Middle Village and the Missing in America Project.

In September, the U.S. Columbarium assisted in interring the cremated remains that were left at the Columbarium at Fresh Pond Crematory.

Each of the 26 remains — which included two veterans from the Spanish-American War that took place in 1898 — were given a proper burial at Long Island National Cemetery.


According to J.P. DiTroia, president of the Fresh Pond Crematory, one of the abandoned veteran’s sons found his father’s remains thanks to the Missing in America Project.

He did not know where his father’s remains were, since he died when the boy was only a year old. He did have his mother’s remains, who died when he was 18 years old in 1964. Finding out that his father was one of the 26 abandoned remains at the Columbarium, he asked if his mother’s cremated remains could be reunited with his father’s.

Both of the remains were placed in a niche at Long Island National Cemetery.

“If it were not for the hours of research from the Missing in America Project and U.S. Columbarium, they would still be left without a proper burial,” Di Troia said.

The remains were given a police escort and a motorcycle escort from the American Legion Riders of Post 1244.

The Missing in America Project is a nonprofit corporation founded in 2007 with the intention of locating, identifying and interring the unclaimed cremains of American veterans.

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