KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Two East Tennessee State Veterans Cemeteries have received a prestigious award from the VA.

The cemeteries at John Sevier and Lyons View received the Operational Excellence Award from the Honorable Matthew T. Quinn, VA Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs. The award is the result of an outstanding performance during the triennial compliance review conducted in March 2023. This accolade underscores the cemeteries’ commitment to providing a dignified and honorable resting place for veterans and their eligible family members.

“To have one of our cemeteries acknowledged by the National Cemetery Administration for their dedication and hard work is a remarkable honor. To have three of our cemeteries recognized fills me with immense pride for our team and our state,” said Tennessee Department of Veterans Services (TDVS) Commissioner Tommy Baker. “While we deeply appreciate this recognition, our primary commitment remains providing an honorable final resting place for Veterans and their family members, and I am grateful to see that we are succeeding in this mission.”

“Achieving eligibility for this award is not an easy task, and the responsibility does not fall on one member of our team. Dozens of members of our team from across the state have worked hard to make this possible,” said TDVS Assistant Commissioner of Cemetery Operations, Patrick Rice. “I hope this award communicates to Veterans and family members across Tennessee that Tennessee State Veterans Cemeteries take great care to ensure those Tennesseans who have served are treated with the utmost respect.”

The cemeteries at John Sevier and Lyons View are the second and third Tennessee State Veterans Cemeteries to receive the award in the last year. Last December, the Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery at Parker’s Crossroads was given the award.

If you or a loved one is looking for resources, assistance, or interested in preregistering for internment at one of five state Tennessee State Veterans Cemeteries, please visit