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Blog Reeve Ralph Groening

The Association of MB Municipalities Official’s Seminar is always an informative and educational experience. The event includes representatives from all over the Province and provides a great opportunity for networking. I was attending a seminar this week,  when I received the news that a tragedy had occurred in Kane.  A three year old girl had drowned.  A phone call from the family followed with a request for a burial plot at the Lowe Farm Cemetery.

I have managed the cemetery for many years.  Certainly the most interesting, curious and challenging responsibility of my council work for the RM of Morris. The Lowe Farm cemetery is owned and managed by the Municipality. I have many cemetery stories. Most are sad, not always, but usually are.

Here are some of my stories:

– A family that hoped beyond hope that their daughter would be healed. I was invited to the family wake to help them choose an appropriate plot location.

– A family that wanted to move the remains of their father to a more fitting location. Eventually they received the required government approval.

– An elderly couple, husband was dying of cancer discussing location of plot with me.

– Meeting parents at the cemetery to pick a location suitable for the entire family for 8 plots. Then the father passed away.

– An elderly community patriarch who joked with his wife about the most ideal location for their final resting place. Ed always had style.

– The sad story of a young man who committed suicide and the search for the “right”location.

– A woman who divorced her husband, married again, but made the decision that her final resting place would be with her first husband.

– A WW2 Veteran who was never afraid to share his opinion with me, but who was so loyal and proud of his community. He insisted always that the cemetery be properly maintained. He was a good man. The cemetery was mowed the day before his burial. Ben would have wanted it that way.

– The thoughtful gentleman who was always interested in discussing Municipal affairs when we met. He cared and understood the responsibility, and would phone or send a card of thanks. Francis was one of a kind.

But a young child, 3 years of age, way too young and so very sad. Yesterday I marked the burial location that the family had chosen. They chose a site close to a young tree. Good decision.  The burial is today. And life goes on…