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Statue and Remains of Famous VMI Alumnus Facing Desecration

Sir Moses Ezekiel, a member of the Virginia Military Institute Class of 1866 and a veteran of the Battle of New Market, is the sculptor of Arlington National Cemetery’s Confederate Reconciliation Memorial, currently on the brink of being destroyed or removed by the Department of Defense.

Buried in a plot adjacent to the memorial along side many other Confederate soldiers, Ezekiel also sculpted the statue of Stonewall Jackson still at the West Virginia Capitol, a copy of which stood in front of the VMI barracks from 1912 to 2020. Another of his works, Virginia Mourning Her Dead, is on the VMI Post under which six cadets are buried who were killed in action or died of their wounds at New Market.

The Spirit of VMI Political Action Committee applauds the efforts of those who desire to prevent the Reconciliation Memorial from being destroyed or removed from Arlington National Cemetery.

Former Virginia U.S. Senator and Secretary of the Navy Jim Webb and architectural historian Catesby Leigh have written excellent editorials in support of the memorial. (Both articles are linked below.)

In his article, Jim Webb writes:

“Four days after the Spanish-American war ended, McKinley proclaimed in Atlanta: “In the spirit of fraternity we should share with you in the care of the graves of Confederate soldiers.” In that call for national unity the Confederate Memorial was born. It was designed by internationally respected sculptor Moses Jacob Ezekiel, a Confederate veteran and the first Jewish graduate of the Virginia Military Institute, who asked to be buried at the memorial in Arlington National Cemetery.”

Save the Confederate Memorial at Arlington, Wall Street Journal, August 18, 2023

Debates Over Arlington’s Confederate Memorial, The American Conservative, September 8, 2023

What can you do? Call you Senator or Representative at 202.224.3121 and 202.225.3121 today. Tell them you think the Reconciliation Memorial should be preserved at Arlington Nation Cemetery.

Founded in 2021, the Spirit of VMI PAC is a registered Virginia Political Action Committee whose purpose is to help restore VMI’s reputation as an elite leadership institution.

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