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About the Individual 

A.B.M.C. Cemeteries

American Battle Monument Commission

World War I

The following information is obtained from the official A.B.M.C. website.  We encourage you to visit their site by clicking on the link at the bottom of this page.  The A.B.M.C. website has additional information as well as downloadable books on each cemetery


Belleau, France

The World War I Aisne-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial lies south of the village of Belleau (Aisne), France six and one-half miles northwest of Chateau-Thierry.  It may be reached by automobile from Paris via Route N-3, turning left opposite the entrance pylons of the Chateau-Thierry Monument which are about two miles west of the town of Chateau-Thierry.  The total distance is 58 miles. The cemetery may also be reached via toll Autoroute A-4 by taking the Montreuil-aux-Lions exit and following the cemetery signs to Lucy-le-Bocage and proceeding through Belleau Wood to the entrance of the cemetery.  There is rail service from Paris (Gare de l'Est) to Chateau-Thierry.  The journey takes about one hour.

This forty-two acre cemetery with the headstones lying in a sweeping curve at the foot of the hill where stands Belleau Wood.  It contains the graves of 2,289 American Dead, most of whom fought in the vicinity and in the Marne valley in the summer of 1918.  From the hillside rises the memorial chapel decorated with sculptured and stain glass details of wartime personnel, equipment and insignia. On its interior walls are inscribed the names of 1,060 who gave their lives in the service of their country and who are resting in unknown graves.  The observation platform in the chapel tower affords excellent views over the battlefield.  During World War II, the chapel was damaged slightly by an enemy shell.

      Belleau Wood adjoining the cemetery contains many vestiges of World War I. At the flagpole is a monument commemorating the valor of the U.S. Marines who captured much of this ground in 1918.

     The cemetery is open daily to the public from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm except December 25 and January 1.  It is open on host country holidays.  When the cemetery is open to the public, a staff member is on duty in the Visitors’ Building to answer questions and escort relatives to grave and memorial sites.

 

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