National Cemetery Administration
Fort Sill National Cemetery
Office Hours: Monday thru Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Closed federal holidays except Memorial Day.
Visitation Hours: Open daily from 7:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m.
This cemetery has space available to accommodate casketed and cremated remains.
From Lawton Airport: Travel north on 11th Street to Lee Boulevard. Go east on Lee Boulevard to Interstate 44. Take Interstate 44 towards Oklahoma City. Take Exit 46 (last free exit) to Elgin. Follow the road approximately four miles straight across and over the train tracks, pass Doleses's Rock/Stone quarry and continue to Porter Hill at the four-way intersection (blinking light). Turn right on Highway 277 North (Meers/Porter Hill Road). Approximately two miles (at the top of the hill) turn right onto Jake Dunn Road and travel approximately one mile to the cemetery’s main entrance, which will be on the left.
Fax all discharge documentation to the National Cemetery Scheduling Office at 1-866-900-6417 and follow-up with a phone call to 1-800-535-1117.
Fort Sill National Cemetery has a Columbarium and offers families the option for cremated remains to be placed in-ground or in the columbarium.
The cemetery also has a designated Scattering Garden for scattering ashes with eligibility to place a memorial marker in the Memorial Section.
A Memorial Walkway in honor of America’s veterans is displayed with various memorial monuments donated by several organizations.
A Memorial Section is designated on cemetery grounds to honor veterans and their families whose remains have never been recovered, who were buried at sea, donated to science, or ashes scattered.
A Public Information Center (PIC) is available for visitors to obtain information from the volunteer staff, or to look up grave locations from an automated KIOSK. The KIOSK and instructions for operation are located outside the PIC, across from the public restrooms. The KIOSK generates a map with the name and grave location of the decedent. The PIC is the location where all funeral processions meet with their family, clergy, and cemetery representative before proceeding to the designated shelter for their service.
Military funeral honors are provided by the Department of Defense and are scheduled by the funeral home representative. Full military honors are provided to active duty and retired military members. A two-person detail is provided to fold and present the flag for non-active or not-retired veterans.
Cemetery policies are conspicuously posted and readily visible to the public.
Floral arrangements accompanying the casket or urn at the time of burial will be placed on the completed grave. Natural cut flowers may be placed on graves at any time of the year. They will be removed when they become unsightly or when it becomes necessary to facilitate cemetery operations such as mowing.
Artificial flowers will be permitted on graves during the period from October 10 through April 1. Potted plants will be permitted 10 days before, through 10 days after Easter Sunday. In observance of Memorial Day, all flowers will be permitted from the Thursday before the last Monday in May to the first Monday in June.
Christmas wreaths, grave blankets and other seasonal adornments may be placed on graves from Dec. 1 through Jan. 20. They may not be secured to headstones or markers.
Permanent plantings, statues, vigil lights, breakable objects and similar items are not permitted on the graves. The Department of Veterans Affairs does not permit adornments that are considered offensive, inconsistent with the dignity of the cemetery or considered hazardous to cemetery personnel. For example, items incorporating beads or wires may become entangled in mowers or other equipment and cause injury.
Permanent items removed from graves will be placed in an inconspicuous holding area for one month prior to disposal. Decorative items removed from graves remain the property of the donor but are under the custodianship of the cemetery. If not retrieved by the donor, they are then governed by the rules for disposal of federal property.
VA regulations 38 CFR 1.218 prohibit the carrying of firearms (either openly or concealed), explosives or other dangerous or deadly weapons while on VA property, except for official purposes, such as military funeral honors. Possession of firearms on any property under the charge and control of VA is prohibited. Offenders may be subject to a fine, removal from the premises, or arrest.
Fort Sill National Cemetery in Elgin, Okla., was dedicated on Nov. 2, 2001. The Fort Sill National Cemetery was the second national cemetery to be constructed in Oklahoma and became the 120th national cemetery to be administered by the National Cemetery Administration. Fort Sill National Cemetery lies in southwestern Oklahoma, approximately 75 miles from Oklahoma City and five miles north of Lawton. Land for the national cemetery was transferred from the Department of the Army’s Ft. Sill Military Reservation in 1998.
The cemetery is situated on land that was once Indian Territory. A military reservation was staked out in January 1869 by Maj. Gen. Philip H. Sheridan and was formally established as Camp Wichita the following month. Sheridan later renamed the garrison as Fort Sill in honor of fellow West Point classmate, Brigadier General Joshua W. Sill, who died in the Battle of Stones’ River during the Civil War. Fort Sill's mission was one of law enforcement for the expanding American frontier. The arrival of the Quohada Comanches to Fort Sill in June 1875 marked the end of Indian warfare of the south Plains.
In the 1890s, Apache Chief Geronimo and 341 other Apache prisoners of war were brought to Fort Sill by the government. Geronimo was granted permission to travel briefly with Pawnee Bill's Wild West Show and also visited with President Theodore Roosevelt. Geronimo died of pneumonia at Fort Sill on Feb. 17, 1909, at the age of 83 and is buried in the post cemetery at Fort Sill. Lt. Hugh L. Scott instructed the remaining Apache prisoners of war on how to build houses, raise crops and herd cattle. Many spent the remainder of their lives at Fort Sill.
The last Native American lands in Oklahoma opened for settlement in 1901 and 29,000 homesteaders registered at Fort Sill for the land lottery during July. On August 6 of that year, the town of Lawton sprang up and quickly grew to become the third-largest city in Oklahoma. As of 2005, Lawton currently is the fourth largest city in Oklahoma, having fallen behind Norman in the last census. With the disappearance of the frontier, the mission of Fort Sill gradually changed from cavalry to field artillery. The first artillery battery arrived at Fort Sill in 1902 and the last cavalry regiment departed in May 1907.
The School of Fire for the Field Artillery was founded at Fort Sill in 1911 and continues to operate today as the world-renowned U.S. Army Field Artillery School. In 2007, the Fort Bliss Air Defense was added to Fort Sill, they both operate under one umbrella called the Fires Center of Excellence. At various times, Fort Sill has also served as home to the Infantry School of Musketry, the School for Aerial Observers, the Air Service Flying School and the Army Aviation School. Today the U.S. Army Field Artillery Center at Fort Sill remains the only active Army installation to continuously serve the Southern Plains since the Indian Wars.
On April 28, 2006, Chief Specialist Evelyn B. (Urich) Einfeldt, a US Navy World War II veteran was laid to rest at the Fort Sill National Cemetery. She was one of role players of the 67 WAVES who were involved in the Operation Magic. She assisted with the assembly of the BOMBE (Enigma), a machine that was used to decode German and Japanese transmissions.
On April 28, 2006, Technical Sgt Alfred Wesley Hill's remains were laid to rest at the Fort Sill National Cemetery. TSgt Hill was missing in action for 62 years. He and eight crewmembers were onboard the B-24 bomber that disappeared after leaving Dobodura, New Guinea on an armed reconnaissance mission flying over Kavieng, New Ireland. He was last reported alive near Morobe Province, New Guinea on November 5, 1943. Remnants of all nine crewmen were found, identified, and returned to their families.