The City of Bethel’s cemetery management is looking to update burial records for the Ridgecrest Cemetery. They plan to model the new record system on one already in place for the Memorial Cemetery.
The City Clerk's office hopes to update the records kept on Ridgecrest Cemetery. Prior to 2002, when a permit system was put in place, records were spotty, leaving some graves unaccounted for.
“Unfortunately,” said Strickler, “the Ridgecrest Cemetery didn’t require permits until much later on in the life of that cemetery, so there are a number of people that have been interred in that cemetery that we don’t have records on.”
Over time, crosses have also fallen down, been damaged, or have faded. Strickler says that this is an important effort for the City, done out of respect for the interred and in the interest of Bethel's own historical record.
Most of the graves are labeled, she says, but she may have to reach out to some Bethel elders for further knowledge.
“I anticipate that there will be a few situations where I will have to go to elders in the community,” said Strickler, “and reach out to the community members to find out if they know who might be in certain locations.”
Strickler's City Clerk's Report for tonight’s City Council meeting says that the hope is to pattern the new Ridgecrest records system much like the electronic management system for the Memorial Cemetery. She anticipates that the project will take about a month.