Source: Sherman Publications

Ridgelawn dedicates new vets memorial

September 21, 2011

A cemetery is more than a final resting place for the deceased. It’s hallowed ground that allows the living to honor the dead, reflect on their lives and give thanks for their deeds.

No one knows this better than Chris and Loretta Acheson, who operate Ridgelawn Memorial Cemetery at 99 W. Burdick St. in Oxford Village.

That’s why on Saturday, the couple held a special ceremony to dedicate a new veterans memorial area to Oxford American Legion Post 108 and all those who have bravely and nobly served their country.

“We have set aside this area to honor our brave men and women, some who have given all in service to their country,” said Pastor Dave Gerber, of Oxford. “We’ve set aside this land to remember the price of freedom and the high cost of war.”

Gerber called the area a “place for hope” where people could “pray for peace,” so “that we’d no longer have to say good-bye to our children.”

In addition to honoring veterans, the Achesons used the ceremony as a way to pay tribute to those individuals, companies and government agencies that have helped Ridgelawn with its various patriotic activities.

The honorees included the Oxford Fire Department, Oxford Village Police, Lake Orion McDonald’s, David Galloway/Master Clean, American Legion Post 108, Boy Scout Troops 366 and 108, Oxford Community Television, Harbor Freight, C.J. Carnacchio/Oxford Leader, Tool Sport & Sign, Pastor Dave Gerber, Dan/Perry Mount Park Cemetery, United Methodist Men’s Group and Metamora Concrete.

The event was also the kickoff for this year’s Wreaths Across America ceremony, scheduled to take place on the second Saturday in December.

“Wreaths Across America is a tribute to every fallen soldier,” Loretta Acheson told the crowd. “We remember and honor those heroes by placing a wreath upon the soldier’s grave. We teach our children that freedom is not free (and) heroes are real. Our goal is to have every Oxford hero’s grave adorned with a wreath of evergreen.”

Ridgelawn is selling brick pavers, which will be used to form and finance a 65-foot memorial walkway leading to the new veterans area. The bricks cost $65 for a 7-inch-by-7-inch paver and $150 for a 7-inch-by-14-inch paver. Each brick can be personalized with names, dates and messages selected by the purchaser. For more information, call (248) 628-6244.

– Editor C.J. Carnacchio