Veterans Cemetery

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The state is about to begin construction on the Georgia National Cemetery in Sutallee.

When completed in 2007, the 775-acre site will be one of the largest national veterans' cemeteries in the country.

The $27.7 million project will create more than 29,000 casket gravesites and a columbarium, which will have 3,000 units for cremated remains.

Construction is a year behind schedule because of the need for additional design work and the challenge of surveying the rocky terrain.

Cemetery director Sandy Beckley says she's already started a waiting list for burials at the new site.

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, 400,000 veterans live within 75 miles of the cemetery. The two closest VA-run cemeteries open to new burials are Chattanooga National Cemetery in Tennessee and Fort Mitchell National Cemetery in Alabama.