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Virginia Department of Veterans Services names news director of state veterans cemeteries

Michael Henshaw
Michael Henshaw. Photo courtesy Virginia Department of Veterans Services.

The Virginia Department of Veterans Services has announced that Michael Henshaw has been named director of cemetery services.

In this position, he will direct the operations of the three VDVS state veterans cemeteries: the Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Amelia, the Southwest Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Dublin, and the Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery in Suffolk.

“We welcome Mike Henshaw to the VDVS leadership team,” said John Maxwell, VDVS commissioner. “With his extensive background in cemetery management with the VA and U.S. Army service in mortuary affairs, he will play a tremendous role in our service to Virginia veterans and their families.”

Henshaw previously served in a number of director-level roles in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) National Cemetery Administration including as director of national veteran cemeteries in Illinois, Ohio, Tennessee and California from 2013-2017.

He retired from the U.S. Army with twenty-five years’ service in 2009. His duties included serving as the operations officer for the Joint Mortuary Affairs Center at Fort Lee, Va. where he served as a mortuary affairs non-commissioned officer in charge of search and recovery teams responsible for locating, recovering and repatriating the remains of U.S. service members missing in action overseas from World War II, the Korean War, and Vietnam War. He also served in both the Operation Iraqi Freedom and Desert Storm campaigns earning two Bronze Stars and other military honors.

Most recently, Henshaw lived in Thailand for three years where he assisted American families and the U.S. government in investigating the fate of prisoners-of-war and service members missing-in-action in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.

The mission of Virginia’s three state veterans cemeteries is to provide a dignified final resting place for veterans and eligible dependents.  The Cemetery Services division of VDVS operates and maintains the Albert G. Horton, Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery in Suffolk, the Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Amelia, and the Southwest Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Dublin.

The cemeteries are places of honor, dignity, respect, and remembrance.  The cemeteries accommodate in-ground burial of casketed remains, in-ground inurnment of cremated remains, and aboveground inurnment of cremated remains in a columbarium.

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