“There’s Always Gift in Tragedy” Crucifix Damaged in Cemetery Garden

DELL RAPIDS, S.D. – Cemeteries are a place for us to remember and mourn the loss of loved ones.

It’s not usually a place associated with crime.

But over the weekend, two women say a special section of the dell rapids cemetery that they helped create was vandalized.

The “Mothers Healing Garden” tucked away in the Dell Rapids Cemetery was created by two women who both lost their sons.

“It is the most peaceful, healing serene connecting… I feel really close to my son when I’m up here,” said Jeannie Ammon.

Ammon helped create the space with Carol Baum. It’s an area filled with benches, memorial stones, a labyrinth and flowers.

Up until last Thursday, there was a 19th century crucifix that stood at the center of the entrance to the garden, but it went missing. Part of it was later found in the bushes.

The women are not sure what happened or who was involved.

“I feel like they have to be hurting or something, it’s not something normally a person would do,” said Baum.

While there are questions about what happened to it, the two are choosing to look at the brighter side and embrace all the new attention the garden is receiving in the wake of the vandalism.

“To be honest, as the dust has settled on it, I want the mothers healing garden to become more, known it’s not necessarily the way you want to get the word spread but I think there’s always gift in tragedy,” said Ammon. “It’s a place where you are living in the moment, and that’s what brings the healing, is by being here and letting it encompass you.”

“And that’s feeling the life that’s here, and not feeling that you’re in a cemetery,” said Baum.

More information can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/mothershealinggarden/

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