By ROBERT JUMPER
ONE FEATHER EDITOR
Cherokee has many memorial grounds and cemeteries. These parcels of land contain the remains of our loved ones and mark a part of our family histories. I think we, each person in the Tribe, owe it to the memories of those who have passed to maintain these memorial sites.
The Qualla Boundary has many public and private memorial sites. Usually, in the case of private or family sites, there are individuals from the family who will maintain those. Public cemeteries are different in that sometimes the personal connection to the site is lost over time.
Each one of us can make a difference in how these sites are maintained. Some men and women are already stepping up and providing landscaping and repair services for the public cemeteries in our communities, but there is much to do. Grounds-keeping can be time consuming and expensive. More people need to join in the effort.
While most recently placed graves have family and friends that will keep up appearances, there are many other plots of people who have been long forgotten by family and are in need of maintenance and repair.
If you have free time or funds you may contribute to the cause of cemetery maintenance and repair, it is a worthy investment. It will honor the memory of those who have passed and are another way to preserve the history of our communities.