Proudly serving those who have served
We believe that the men and women who have served in the Armed Forces deserve special consideration. To pay tribute to our fallen heroes, Keyser Funeral and Cremation Service offers comprehensive veterans burial benefits to those eligible.
At Keyser, we handle veteran details for you. We provide all options so you can make an informed decision, in an atmosphere as positive as possible.
Available veteran benefits:
- Inscribed cemetery marker
- U.S. flag
- Gun salute
- Transportation costs (some or all of the cost)
Who is eligible?
Military members on active duty, Military retirees, members and former members of the Selected Reserve, eligible U.S. veterans of any war, other U.S. veterans who served at least one term of enlistment and separated under conditions other than dishonorable.
How are Social Security and Veterans’ benefits handled?
Keyser will notify both agencies. Social Security pays a lump sum death benefit directly to the spouse. Veterans receive cash benefits based on disability or other requirements.
How do I make advance arrangements?
Send a copy of your discharge papers (DD214) that we will keep in our permanent files. If you wish, call us and we will handle all details over the phone. It is extremely important to have a copy of your discharge/DD214 available for family members and your funeral director for benefit application.
NOTE: Discharge/DD214 – before 1950 the term “discharge” was used for both WD AGO 53-55 or discharge certificate and the back side of the discharge form with important information on it. After 1950, the form is a DD214. A “Certificate of Military Service” in NOT proof of service.
What are veterans honor services?
Military honors are available to all veterans regardless of rank or location of burial. If you are retired military with 20 years or more of service, we will call and request an active duty honor guard from your branch of service. The ceremony will consist of a Chaplain to speak, flag folding and presentation to next of kin, rifle salute and the playing of TAPS.
Honorably Discharged Veterans with less than 20 years
Currently, we call volunteer, local veterans groups for Military Honors requests. Typically these are retired veterans with incredible service histories. The ceremony will consist of a Chaplain to speak, flag folding, presentation and the playing of TAPS. Rifle Salute is not regulation but is often offered. Payment is not required but these groups accept donations.
Wood Flag Cases
The Military provides a wood flag case for any active duty deaths. For all other veterans, we stock wood flag cases.
What are options for Veteran cemeteries?
All veterans, and possibly their spouses and children, are entitled to free cemetery spaces, grave opening/closing, grave liner and headstone at a VA cemetery. We will work with you to get you available options.
In Ulster County…
In Ulster County we are fortunate to have several VFW and American Legion Posts that provide full military honors, which includes taps, 3 rifle volley and presentation of the flag. All eligible veterans are entitled to active duty representatives of the armed force they served in. Generally active duty personnel provide Taps and Flag Presentation, it does not include rifle volley.
Burial in a National Cemetery is at no charge, it includes grave, grave opening & closing, concrete burial liner and headstone. Burial space for the spouse can also be included.
* Ulster County now offers to Ulster County Veterans a Veterans Cemetery with in the grounds of New Paltz Rural Cemetery. The primary benefit is the grave and grave opening and closing is at no charge to the veteran, all other fees and requirements apply.
Widow or widowers of eligible veterans may be entitled to a monthly contribution to their living expenses if they are in a approved living facility or in a nursing facility. Restrictions apply. Contact Ulster County Veterans for full details.
Ulster County Veteran’ Service Agency
Steven J. Massee, Director
5 Development Court
Kingston, NY 12401
Phone: (845) 340-3190
Fax: (845) 340-3194
Office Hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM Mon-Fri
Timothy Keating, Service Officer
The Ulster County Veterans’ Service Agency (UCVSA) provides support to County veterans and their families in obtaining medical, disability, pension and education benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the NYS Department of Veteran Affairs. The UCVSA also helps veterans with issues such as homelessness, burials, tax exemptions, employment, transportation and the FAVOR discount card program, and performs outreach to local communities and service organizations.
The VA operates the medical facilities listed below in this area:
VA Outpatient/Primary Clinic
324 Plaza Road
Kingston, NY 12401
Stratton VA Medical Center
113 Holland Avenue
Albany, NY 12208
Veteran Crisis Hotline: 1-800-273-8255