LANSING | Two years ago Kyle Bergfor chose Oak Hill Cemetery in Hammond as the location for his Eagle service project. Kyle has a relative that was a soldier in the Civil War who was buried there.
After walking the entire cemetery, asking a lot of questions, visiting many other cemeteries, many hours of volunteering to clean up the cemetery, attending many meetings and joining the on line community’s efforts to restore the cemetery (organized and started by the Graper family), Kyle was told to come up with some ideas where he could contribute to the restoration. During this time, the actual ownership and custody of the cemetery was being worked through the court system guided by Frank Mrvan-North Township Trustee. This process took a long time, but Kyle was persistent and never wavered in wanting to do his project at the cemetery.
Kyle chose to beautify the area around the flag pole and the only water supply in the cemetery. Kyle also built a box to store watering cans and bottles so that visitors could water their flowers planted at the headstones to honor their loved ones.
On Sept. 14, Kyle’s Eagle service project was dedicated by Congressman Visclosky, who presented an American flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol and Representative Lawson, who presented a State of Indiana flag that was flown of the State Capital. Kyle and the Troop 276 color guard proudly raised the flags over the cemetery for the first time in many years.
Kyle and his family found out at the dedication that a TAPS system will be installed at the flag pole in the future (when the permanent office structure is complete). The TAPS system will play “TAPS” over a speaker system daily like that at the Crown Point cemetery. A fitting final tribute!