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Russian Cemetery needs help

Posted: Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Five years ago I wrote to you regarding the deplorable condition of the Russian Cemetery in Kenai. It has worsened in the following years and is now so overgrown it's nearly impossible to enter at all.

Due to debilitating disease, I am only able to bring flowers to the cemetery, but I would like to thank my daughter, Kathaleen Anderson (who every year cleans her father's and grandparent's graves), my granddaughter, Kendra Shepherd and Bob Hopfner, who recently spent many hours cleaning these graves. Also, Phillip (Little Guy) Wilson Jr. and his brother-in-law Carl Rodgers, who spent many hours cleaning the Phillip Wilson section of the Russian Cemetery.

The problem is the entire rest of the cemetery. When the Kenaitze tribe speaks of honoring their forebears, I do not understand why such an important thing as keeping their last resting place an honorable place to visit is so neglected. Every single member of the Russian Church and the Kenaitze Tribe is descended from those resting in this pitiful place.

It is clear from ads in the newspaper that the Tribe pays for snow removal in the winter. Why not cemetery upkeep in the summer? If funds are not available for this, how about a set day each year where volunteers get together and honor their relatives?

This is truly the saddest place on the Kenai Peninsula to visit.

Karen F. Wilson

Kenai



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