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UUFDC Dedicates Memorial Garden

The UU Fellowship Memorial Garden, located in the meadow behind the building, was formally dedicated Sunday, October 24, 2010 by Memorial Garden Task Force Chairperson Rev. Cynthia Johnson.

The serene setting will have uniform-sized memorial plaques on the Memory Wall and, if desired, have ashes buried in the common ground garden.

Work of the Task Force included meetings, tours, charts, timetables, minutes, interviews, articles, photographs, Google searches, and more meetings. At the first meeting of the Task Force in December 2008, a vision was developed:

  • Beautiful
  • Harmonious with the emphasis on nature in Door County
  • An informal feel
  • Reflect Unitarian Universalist values
  • Memorial plaques that are identical in size and information, probably the name and dates of birth and death
  • A peaceful place that invites a meditative spirit
  • Handicapped-accessible
  • Places to sit
  • Space so that 30 or so people could stand there for a service of the interment of ashes
  • Close to the parking lot
  • Low maintenance so that its existence would not increase the work load for the Fellowship
  • Policies and procedures formally adopted and well-known to members and the person(s) or committee responsible for seeing that they are carried out in place before the actual project is begun
  • A destination for people who may come to look at our gardens and surroundings.

The Task Force includes Lynn Lees, Ray DiIulio, Cynthia Oliver, Sarah Naber, Dottie and Lloyd Gerrits, Garrett Cohn, Jack Redell, and Cynthia Johnson with additional help from Al Johnson, Helene DiIulio, Bob Lindahl, and others.  Beth Coleman was a helpful resource early in the process.  Our UUFDC gardener Peter Witt wisely referred us to the key person who made it happen: Bob Kaminski, a tireless on-site worker and behind-the-scenes Door County marvel.  We love having stone walls constructed from stones from Willard Kramer’s Sister Bay farm and stunning boulders courtesy of Pat Hockers.  Thank you!

Memorial Garden

By Jack Redell

A meadow that contains the dust
which remains at the end of a life;
a space shared with others—
a very small space.

The peaceful quiet place of remembrance
for the ashes of the cremains—
crust of the dust
the sum of all pains

washed away by summer rains
along with the happiness acquired
during an existence
ended prematurely, always too soon.

Most of the former life
evaporates in the heat of a fire
eventually to be dispersed
into a universe.

What doesn’t burn
is placed in a meadow
to disappear under a blanket
of winter snow

reappearing in spring
as a peaceful
quiet place
of remembrance

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