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The rural cemetery plays a special role

The cemetery takes on added significance for a Saskatchewan farming couple since their son died in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash

MONTMARTRE, Saskatchewan. – This sacred piece of land has always been worshiped by Arnold Bieber and his family.

And now they have another family to share their reverence, pride and tears with.

Fairview Cemetery was established in 1906 by pioneer brothers, who established homesteads in the area in 1903. Bieber’s grandparents were among 53 immigrants to Iowa who established homestead and formed the first congregation of brothers in Canada.

More than a century later, Bieber, 92, and his wife Angelene, 91, regularly drive from Regina to visit the renovated cemetery where his grandmother, brother, aunt and several other relatives are buried. He led the modernization of the cemetery in 1995, raising thousands of dollars to build a granite cairn on which all the people buried in the cemetery are listed.

“This is where it all started and this is where all the stories I heard when I was young are found,” said Bieber, who was a farmer in the area from 1950 to 1953.

Bieber recently visited Fairview Cemetery with his wife and son, Don, to appreciate the custom barriers installed by Russell and Raelene Herold. The artistic steel doors feature a pioneering scene with prairie lilies, stalks of wheat and the founding year 1906 of Fairview Cemetery.

The Herolds have spent a tremendous amount of energy and resources maintaining and upgrading Fairview Cemetery since their son Adam was buried here two years ago.

Adam Herold, 16, was the youngest victim in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash, which left 16 people dead on April 6, 2018. The Herolds chose the rural setting to rest their son not only because he is close to the family farm, but also because it was a meaningful place for Adam.

Arnold Bieber was the driving force behind the preservation of Fairview Cemetery and the construction of this memorial in memory of his pioneer family. He shows his brother’s name on Fairview Cairn. | Christalee Froese photo

“It was hard to decide, but we just thought it made sense to us,” said Raelene.

“Adam always came to ski-doo here and he hunted around here too.”

Bieber couldn’t be happier to have Adam alongside his deceased loved ones, as it has been a struggle to maintain the prairie site. After the cairn project was completed, Bieber traveled regularly from Regina to mow the lawn and repair existing gravestones. Over the past four years, however, his declining health has made it difficult for him to travel regularly.

“It was starting to get to the dogs because the grass was not being cut regularly and the caraganas that were here were starting to seed everything,” Bieber said.

He considers the arrival of the Herolds a blessing, who have removed the caragana and maintained the cemetery.

“I was really going down the hill and the day Russell came and asked me if Adam could be buried here I just told them I would take whatever they wanted because I knew what kind of people they were. “said Bieber.

Russell said it was important to ensure that the pioneers who started the cemetery are honored in any improvements.

“We designed the doors on purpose to respect the pioneers who were here,” he said.

The Herolds spared no expense to further improve the cemetery, installing a powder coated metal fence and custom metal gates. The existing cairn and headstones recognizing the original members of Fairview Cemetery remain at the center of the cemetery. Adam’s name has been added to the list on the cairn, and a stone with an engraved granite plaque marks his separate grave.

Russell and Raelene Herold, left, paid tribute to the pioneers of Fairview Cemetery by creating this tribute fence. The Bieber family – Angelene, Don and Arnold – were thrilled to have the new fence at the cemetery where their ancestors are buried. | Christalee Froese photo

“We own the land all around so this is our home,” said Russell. “What’s good for us is that we can work in the field or combine, and we can see that.”

The Herolds also paid tribute to all of the passengers in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash by having their names engraved on stainless steel hockey sticks and planting an evergreen tree in honor of the 16 victims. Each large stick bears the logo of the Humboldt Broncos hockey team, as well as a special symbol for each victim, such as the microphone for announcer Tyler Bieber and a steering wheel for bus driver Glen Doerksen.

“We tried to do everything so that you didn’t have to worry about the upkeep and it would be there for a long time,” said Russell. “We hope people stop and enjoy and for us, it’s just nice to come and spend time here.”

Fairview Cemetery is located 16 kilometers south of Montmartre on grid 606 and four kilometers to the west.


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‘Hooliganism’ in small rural cemetery sparks anger along Kapiti coast

Marilyn Aitken wants the Awa Tapu cemetery to be better maintained.

JARED NICOLL

Marilyn Aitken wants the Awa Tapu cemetery to be better maintained.

The vandalism at a small rural cemetery north of Wellington angered a widow and the promise of stricter security measures.

Marilyn Aitken is fed up and asked the Kapiti Coast District Council to install security cameras in Awa Tapu cemetery during a recent council meeting.

She has visited the cemetery along Valley Road almost every day since her husband died last November.

Kapiti Coast District Council plans to tighten security at Awa Tapu Cemetery.

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Kapiti Coast District Council plans to tighten security at Awa Tapu Cemetery.

“I have witnessed some very upsetting things happening up there … a van rolls over graves.

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“My sister ran after him down the aisle and asked him, ‘Did he have no respect? He quickly told her where to go.

“The cemetery was used as a race track, so the doors are locked at night. There were fresh tire tracks up there. [in March] and on Valley Road. This does not prevent people from going to the cemetery at night. “

Once, a ceramic photo of her husband’s gravestone was smashed.

All security cameras would only have to record, she said, and would not need staff to monitor them around the clock.

She also wanted the staff to take better care of the graves. At one point, she contacted the town hall after being surprised to see that her husband’s land had dropped by about two feet.

The next day, her husband’s grave was backfilled, but others were not. “Weeds are a big problem up there, because some graves are just weeds, not grass.

“I ask the councilors, the mayor, to help end this disrespect. Only then can the dead be left in pieces there.”

Concerned neighbors provided council with a written statement at a recent council meeting, outlining details of the nightly parties.

“For years, there have been problems with late-night parties in the cemetery or hooligans blasting their music all night long and causing burnouts,” the statement said.

“The cemetery is meant to be a place of rest and peace, but somehow the hooligans seem to be rampaging in this cemetery with no consequences.”

They reported incidents to the police.

A spokeswoman for the Kapiti Coast District Council said the mayor spoke to Aitken and the police after the meeting.

“He called for an increase in cemetery patrols, and more cameras are currently being reviewed as there is already one located at the crematorium.

“Our Parks and Recreation team also met with the police to discuss the situation and possible solutions.

“Since Christmas, the cemetery gates have been closed at night, then reopened in the morning.”

Anyone caught in the act of violating cemetery regulations is liable to a fine of up to $ 20,000.


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Vandals desecrate mausoleum, gravestone in rural Albany cemetery

City police are investigating vandalism at the Albany rural cemetery, including an anti-gay slur and other black paint spray-painted graffiti on a white marble mausoleum and gray granite marker.

Desecration of the historic cemetery burial grounds apparently occurred either late Saturday evening or early Sunday morning when a frequent cemetery walker spotted it and notified cemetery staff.

“It is the most vicious act we have had in the 35 years that I have been here,” said chief executive John Buszta. “I think it’s an act of random vandalism, unrelated to the burial grounds.”

“We think of bored teenagers in the area who did something really stupid,” said Detective Sgt. George Thomaides. He ruled out a hate crime or crime targeting family members buried in the mausoleum.

The vandalized Hosler Mausoleum can be found in Section 130 at the northwest end of the 467-acre cemetery, near homes along Schuyler Road.

The ornate mausoleum features a stained glass window and a filigree copper door grille, with space for six coffins along its walls. Five burials began with Patriarch Frederick W. Hosler, the family patriarch, born in 1864 and died in 1940. He was president of the Hosler Ice Cream Co. on Spruce Street in Albany. His wife, Mattie May Wheeler, and other members of his family are buried there. The last burial was Harold J. Magee in 1980.

The vandals spray-painted “RIP” and a six-letter anti-gay slur on either side of the richly carved columns, along with a caricature of a person’s head and a capital “A” on the side and side. the back of the mausoleum.

Nearby, “Argo” was spray painted – an apparent reference to Ben Affleck’s political thriller – on a cross on the front of a granite gravestone for William J. Smith and two family members.

Thomaides said investigators did not recover a spray paint or any other evidence.

Investigators will compare the cartoon with a database of taggers and graffiti kept by police in an attempt to match the cemetery vandals, Thomaides said.

“In my opinion, it was the work of young children or a graffiti tagger,” said Buszta, although there is no indication of alcohol consumption activity among adolescents in the area. .


The Hosler Mausoleum commands a small grassy island in a secluded part of the picturesque and wooded cemetery, established in 1841. Albany Rural is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and many political notables are buried there, including President Chester A. Arthur, including the tomb is the most visited among more than 135,000 tombs.

Albany Rural is of national significance as it was at the forefront of the country’s rural cemetery movement in the mid-19th century. At that time, cemeteries were located on the outskirts of overcrowded and polluted northeastern towns. They were landscaped by landscape architects who incorporated wooded ravines, streams, and monumental stone carvings to create a park-like setting for the dead and a popular destination for Victorian-era picnickers.

Buszta said the cemetery will apply for a grant from the State Cemetery Council’s vandalism fund to pay for the specialized cleaning process needed to remove the spray paint from the porous marble mausoleum and granite marker. He could not provide an estimate of the costs of the cleanup.

Following the vandalism, cemetery officials are considering additional security measures, including surveillance cameras, Buszta said.

“It’s terrible. Why ? asked Chris Bunting, a gardener for eight years. “Why would anyone do that in a grave? It’s a total disrespect.”

“Just so sad and sick. I hope the vandals are caught,” Paula Lemire, an Albany Rural expert who blogs frequently on the cemetery’s history, wrote on Twitter.

[email protected]518-454-5623@PaulGrondahl


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