JFK gravesite gets eternal flame back: How they kept it lit

JFK gravesite: A temporary burner has kept the eternal flame alight since March, when repairs began at President Kennedy's Arlington Cemetery gravesite. In a ceremony Tuesday, the flame was returned to its permanent home.

Susan Walsh/AP
Army Secretary John McHugh lights the eternal flame at the gravesite of former President John F. Kennedy at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013. The cemetery transferred the flame from a temporary burner to the restored, permanent eternal flame that is part of a memorial to the 35th president.

The eternal flame at the gravesite of former President John F. Kennedy has been restored at Arlington National Cemetery.

On Tuesday, the cemetery transferred the flame from a temporary burner to the restored, permanent eternal flame that is part of a memorial to the 35th president.

Repairs began in April to replace components of the eternal flame's burner. Contractors installed new gas and air lines, a new burner assembly and new drainage lines below the flame.

The work was supposed to be completed by late May. But the flame remained on a temporary burner through October. The temporary flame was visible to tourists during the project.

Officials said the repairs were needed after more than four decades of use. The cemetery says the new equipment will provide easier maintenance.

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