1 of 5
Erika Wagner, 35, of Crown Point, honors the grave of Hammond millionaire and philanthropist Frank Betz during a special ceremony Saturday at Hammond's Oak Hill Cemetery. Betz, who died in 1940, is remembered by city Boy Scouts for funding the purchase of a Hammond council Scout camp in Berrien Springs, Mich.
Crown Point Girl Scouts Ava Graper, 8, and Gabby Wagner, 9, pass out flags and cleaning supplies to people attending Saturday's memorial ceremony at Hammond's Oak Hill Cemetery. Some attendees helped place flags on graves and cleaned headstones following the ceremony and tour.
Vietnam War veteran Mike Lukich, of Hammond, takes in the memorial ceremony at Hammond's Oak Hill Cemetery Saturday. Lukich currently serves as a command sergeant major with the Indiana state defenses.
North Township Trustee Frank Mrvan thanks the crowd gathered at Saturday's flag and historical ceremony, honoring the veterans and historical figures buried at Hammond's Oak Hill Cemetery. Mrvan's office took over the cemetery three years ago amid shoddy conditions, unmarked graves and exposed human bones that occurred under the watch of previous cemetery owners. Saturday's ceremony, in part, celebrated vast improvements made at the historic burial ground, where graves date back to the Civil War era.
Oak Hill Cemetery caretaker Kelly Vicari, left, an employee of the North Township Trustee, directs volunteers and spectators at Saturday's memorial service at the Hammond burial ground. Kara Graper, right, of Crown Point, helped organize the event that drew about 200 people.
HAMMOND | About 200 people gathered at historic Oak Hill Cemetery Saturday, honoring veterans and historical figures resting in this once troubled burial ground.
North Township Trustee Frank Mrvan's office took over the cemetery, located at the intersection of 165th and Hohman Avenue, three years ago amid a rash of unmarked graves, unkempt conditions and exposed human bones that occurred under the watch of previous private owners and managers.
Since then, the graves and grounds have been largely restored. Saturday's ceremony, spearheaded by cemetery caretaker Kelly Vicari and Oak Hill history enthusiast and volunteer Kara Graper, of Crown Point, celebrated the many veterans and historical figures buried at the cemetery, including dozens of Civil War veterans.
Be the first to know
Get local news delivered to your inbox!