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Archive for September, 2009

9:30 AM comes pretty early on any Monday morning, but for some reason it didn’t seem that early on this particular day.  This was the day a lot of people have been anticipating.   This was the day the Cpl McEvoy was finally going to have a stone to mark his final resting place!

Jim and I arrived at Woodward Hill Cemetery about 9:15 and found that people were assembling.  Chairs were set up for the family in front of the gravesite, chairs for the dignitaries next to the gravesite, State Troopers were lining up, Bagpipers were assembling and cameras were being focused by a TV station and the State Trooper Organization.  It was busyness with family greeting one another, State Troopers introducing themselves to the family and final details were being ironed out.  Before we knew it, the ceremony began with the State Troopers marching in from the right.  What an impressive site!IMG_0009
There were two different Honor Guards, one from the Lancaster City Police and the other from the Pennsylvania State Troopers. The one pictured below is from Lancaster.IMG_0013
. . . and the State Trooper’s Department Ceremonial Unit Members which did the Presentation of Colors.IMG_0017After the National Anthem was sung and Invocation was given, Trooper Kelly A. Osborne-Filson (yes, this is Trooper Kelly I’ve referred to in all the posts) read Cpl McEvoy’s biography.  Seated behind Kelly is Chaplain Grover G. DeVault, Pennsylvania State Police Chaplain and Lancaster City Police Chief, Keith Sadler.IMG_0022Captain Brenda M. Bernot, Commanding Officer of Troop J spoke of Cpl McEvoy’s sacrifice and presented the new headstone along with Terry McEvoy, grandson of the deceased McEvoy.   Mr. McEvoy then placed the Memorial Wreath, which was provided by the Pennsylvania State Police Academy Civic Association,  next to the new headstone.  The headstone was donated by Haldy/Keener Memorials, a division of Gingrich Memorials.IMG_0023 Members of Pennsylvania State Police Troop J made up the Firing Detail which fired 3 rounds (see the smoke??) and Trooper Louis P. Gober of Troop M played Taps. IMG_0032The amazing Chester County Emerald Society Pipe Band gave a simply amazing rendition of, what else but, Amazing Grace!  There really is nothing like a bugle playing Taps and a group of bagpies playing Amazing Grace to make goosebumps pop up at a Funeral or a Memorial Service.  This one had both!

Appreciating the music is a granddaughter of Cpl.  McEvoy.

IMG_0045 The service closed with a benediction and closing remarks by Lt. William P. White. He led the Troopers (and anyone else who desired to) in the “Call of Honor,” the Pennsylvania State Trooper’s creed, motto or whatever the term they use for the . . .

Call of Honor

I am a Pennsylvania State Trooper; a soldier of the law.  To me
is entrusted the honor of the force. I must serve honestly, faithfully,
and if need be, lay down my life as others have done before me,
rather than swerve from the of duty  It is my duty to obey the law
and to enforce it without any consideration of class, color, creed,
or condition. It is also my duty to be of service to anyone who may
be in danger or distress, and at all times so conduct myself that the
Honor of the Force may be upheld.

After the service, photo opportunties  were taken advantage of!  The first and most important?  Why it is the family and Kelly around the new stone!  Kelly is the one in the State Trooper uniform (as if you the reader couldn’t figure that one out!)

The girl behind the headstone in the black dress and white sweater is the great-granddaughter of Cpl. McEvoy.  Hallie Romanowski, is wearing her grandmother’s dress (Cpl. McEvoy’s daughter, Martha) and brought Martha’s scrapbook.  That scrapbook was full of wonderful family information.  Martha even kept a copy of the original report of the accident that took McEvoy’s life.

I’d love to put names with the faces, but all I know are Hallie’s, Terry McEvoy on the far left, and his sister, Vicky , in the black, next to Hallie.IMG_0057

A wonderful photo op would be the next photo. Terry McEvoy and the flag that had been presented to him is in the middle behind his grandfather’s new headstone. He is surrounded by the Ceremonial Unit Members. Isn’t this a great photo??IMG_0059

This chapter would not be complete with a picture of Trooper Kelly standing next to the headstone that would not be there today if it were not for her!  Corporal Ben F. McEvoy will now be remembered through the ages, thanks to one Pennsylvania State Trooper who just would not give up!  It was her sheer determination that brought us all together at Woodward Hill Cemetery on that overcast Monday morning in September.IMG_0047

The morning ended with what else but food and socialization at the Troop J, Lancaster Headquarters.  The Pennsylvania State Police really know how to honor their own, and in doing so has shown a family that their ancestor was just as important to others as he was to them!  It was a great morning and a beautiful ceremony.  This was a fitting end to the final chapter in honoring

Cpl. Ben F. McEvoy, Pennsylvania State Trooper.

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The blogs dealing with this story from the very beginning can be accessed at the following links:

http://tr.im/mCly
http://tr.im/mWSR
http://tr.im/o0Eg
http://tr.im/yV3t

Thank you for following the story.  It’s been a pleasure being the “storyteller!”


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This is the next to last chapter in the Honoring of Cpl. Ben F. McEvoy.  The dedication ceremony honoring him will be held on Monday, at his supposed gravesite . . . and Marianne, Jim and I have been invited along with his family and members of his Pennsylvania State Trooper family.

A week ago, Jim and I went to the cemetery to verify some information on another project I am working on, and I spotted this!  The cement slab was in place for the grave marker for Cpl. McEvoy!  I cannot believe I did not have my camera with me, but thank goodness, I had my cell phone!

MMS_Resized_PixI went back today with my camera, and it was a good thing I took the picture last week, because the scene had changed.  Everything is in place for the unveiling ceremony next week.  Well, almost everything.  Jim will clean off Cpl. McEvoy’s uncle’s headstone directly behind the “Kiehl” Monument.  See it?  It is covered with grass clippings from many mowings in the past.

IMG_0208

We’ll be there Sunday to clean off that headstone and we’ll be there Monday!

. . . there is no way we’d miss that!

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Arnold My headstone of the week was found on a recent visit to Riverside, California. The headstone of Rev. Arnold can be found at Evergreen Cemetery in that city.
I have always been attracted to the unusual, and this falls into that category. This doesn’t appear to have been stamped from a mold now does it? It’s almost as though the perfect rock was found and the scroll and wording was carved from that rock, and then the rock shaped into the perfect monument to honor Rev. Arnold.
I think it’s beautiful and that’s the reason it is
Linda’s Headstone of the Week for Week #46.

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