I am frequently asked how I became interested in cemeteries. It is a story that began for me as a young child. Every year on the first Sunday in May, I traveled with my family to Bethabara Cemetery in Fayette County for Decoration Day. And every year I watched my mother and aunts place flowers at our ancestors’ graves. We would walk between rows of headstones, and I would hear my grandfather repeat the same stories about who was who and how that person fit into our family tree. Then we would stand beside the freshly decorated graves and proudly have our picture taken. Those faded photographs not only depict the evolution of the cemetery but also remind me how quickly time passes. My grandfather died in 2008 and now lies buried at Bethabara, and Decoration Day is more meaningful to me than ever before. I walk the rows with my own children, repeating the stories my grandfather entrusted to me many years ago, perpetuating my love for old cemeteries that began when I was a child.
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