MONEYJefferson Memorial Cemetery receives backlash for annual car cruise

Jefferson Memorial Cemetery receives backlash for annual car cruise

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A neighborhood cemetery is going through neighborhood backlash after internet hosting a charity automobile cruise on its grounds.

Jefferson Memorial Cemetery, Funeral Residence, Crematory and Arboretum hosted its annual automobile cruise on Sunday with a beer tent, meals vans and stay music.



Some individuals stated the occasion brought about heartache for individuals who went to the cemetery Sunday to grieve the lack of a liked one. Others stated they did not thoughts that there was an occasion as a result of it introduced the neighborhood collectively.

“It was exhausting for everyone and to see him should endure all of that,” stated Invoice Petrosky Jr.

This week has been tough for Petrosky and his household. Two years in the past this week, his mom, Donna, died. On Sunday, Petrosky’s father went to go to his spouse’s grave at Jefferson Memorial and was caught off guard by what he noticed. 

“He acquired tousled in a bunch of site visitors. And there was a man directing site visitors and each time he requested what was happening they rerouted him to go a distinct manner than we usually would go,” he stated.

Petrosky stated his dad could not consider this kind of occasion was taking place within the place his spouse was laid to relaxation.

“It was completely different for him, developing on my mother’s two-year anniversary of her loss of life and it being very sudden to all of us. It is already a tough time of 12 months for him. And for him to go to the cemetery and should endure all that, he got here residence and he wasn’t completely satisfied,” Petrosky stated.

Jefferson Memorial Vice President Dagny V. Neel Fitzpatrick and different workers members confirmed KDKA-TV across the grounds on Thursday. They stated that they seem to be a memorial park and never a standard cemetery.

They shared a press release that stated partially, “We strongly consider a memorial park is greater than only a place for burials as our scenic settings invitations households, guests and the neighborhood at giant to kind new traditions of life gatherings.”

The memorial park has hosted its automobile present for 10 years to lift cash for the American Most cancers Society. This Sunday, $2,200 was raised for the group.

“My grandfather handed away from most cancers. I’ve no downside elevating cash for most cancers. I simply do not feel like in a cemetery is a spot to have a beer tent, and music, and a bunch of vehicles,” Petrosky stated.

Different individuals who have family members buried there advised KDKA-TV that they do not see any downside with the occasion as a result of it was community-oriented.

Whereas Petrosky is trying again on recollections of his mother, he strongly believes the occasion was disrespectful.

“They need to put a letter out to apologize, and I believe they need to discover a higher place to have their automobile present,” Petrosky stated.

Jefferson Memorial additionally hosts Easter egg hunts and a tree lighting occasion.

“Every time we had been getting plots and scheduling the funeral and burial and all the pieces, nothing was talked about about automobile exhibits. They’ve an Easter egg hunt. That is simply as type of odd to me,” Petrosky stated.

The total assertion from Jefferson Memorial Advertising and marketing Director S. Brooke Neel and Fitzpatrick could be discovered beneath.

“In 1929, Jefferson Memorial Park elected to undertake the memorial park mannequin and never be a standard cemetery. The park held its annual automobile cruise charity occasion on Sunday August 14, 2022. This occasion raised roughly $2,200 for the American Most cancers Society and all occasions at Jefferson Memorial Park solely advantages charities and never the memorial park.

“We strongly consider a memorial park is greater than only a place for burials as our scenic settings invitations households, guests and the neighborhood at giant to kind new traditions of life gatherings. Jefferson Memorial Park has held occasions on our grounds for practically 50 years. For a decade, we now have hosted this charity occasion and to make sure that we inform the neighborhood of our exercise we make posts on our web site, social media web page and on grounds of our memorial park. We’re extremely cautious to solely use non-burial property to host this occasion.

“Memorial parks have lengthy been a gathering place for members of a neighborhood that present a spot of historic significance, an escape from hectic day-to-day life, and a connection between households. Our memorial park was designed to mix nature, artwork and historical past. By way of annual occasions, we’re in a position to join with and educate the general public about our grounds – such because the civil conflict veteran and architectural Pittsburgh artifacts together with the Financial institution of Pittsburgh columns, grand limestone staircase from the B.F. Jones, Jr. Property, and a backyard statuary from the Henry Oliver Property have been positioned on the grounds for the neighborhood at giant to go to. 

“Our purpose is to assist promote therapeutic, friendship, and stewardship with the neighborhood we’re proud to be part of for practically 95 years. Internet hosting annual occasions helps us preserve a relationship with the area people. As a memorial park, we goal to destigmatize the notion that cemeteries are a spot of burial solely. We look ahead to internet hosting these annual neighborhood occasions sooner or later and invite you to go to us for a tour.”

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