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Grave Concerns Workgroup Meeting Minutes
March 15,  2010

Call to Order

The Grave Concerns Association (GCA) meeting was called to order at 4:30 P.M.,                   on March 15, 2010, by Chairperson Laurel Lemke.

A warm welcome was extended to all those who were present.


Rosemary Chaput, Kip  Engberg, Lorna Gifford, Michael Hardie, Becky Huber, Laurel Lemke, Joe Lewis, Eric Haas, Patty Tincher, Karen Young

Approval of Agenda

Chairperson, Laurel Lemke provided an overview of the agenda.


The minutes of the February 8, 2010 meeting were read by the secretary. There were no additions or deletions.

A motion was made and seconded, and passed to accept the minutes as read.

Treasurer’s Report

The Treasurer’s Report for February 8, 2010 was given by Chairperson, Laurel Lemke.

WSH                                                            $      572.96

America’s FCU checking                                 $ 15,393.35

America’s FCU Savings                                  $        50.01

Grand Total                                               $16, 016.32

A motion was made and seconded to accept the Treasurer’s report and to pay the bills that need to be paid to date.

Committee Reports

Event Planning Committee Rosemary Chaput reported that the Lakewood Parks dept has approved the proposal for an internal halyard flag pole and a Washington State flag.  Laurel Lemke will make arrangements to have a check sent to Columbia Manufacturing in the amount of $766.30.

Our plans are to dig the hole on Saturday, April 24, 2010. The flag pole dedication will be held on Saturday, June 26, 2010. Rosemary asked members to think of what they would like the dedication plaque to say.

Historical Committee No work was done during the past month. We still need to go through archives and sort items. Laurel Lemke will coordinate a work party to sort through boxes and organize items. We should be thinking about what we want to do for the WSH museum display.

Research Committee Becky Huber has volunteered and has been researching if the men buried along the perimeter were veterans or not.  She was able to use Ancestory.com to find additional information on WSH patients.  She explained that  she was able to identify 12 veterans, 2 Civil War veterans,  draft cards, family trees and was also able to identify individuals on the 1920 & 1930 census. She will continue her research.

Fundraising Committee Lorna Gifford reported that there will be a “Hometown Hero” All you can eat Spaghetti dinner at Casa Mia on April 28, 2010. The individual honored as the Hometown Hero will be given a $100. Voucher. The voucher will represent a $100. donation that will be made to the charity of his/her choice in his/her name.

Lorna also talked about having some type of an USO show and dinner to benefit Grave Concerns.  She indicated that a similar event in Orting was successful.

Richard Chiaravolloti is preparing for the annual Dahlia Bulb sale.

Lap-Top Research Committee Laurel Lemke and Cindy Walston, a computer consultant, have been looking into different lap-tops that will serve the GCA needs. She will continue to look and expects to have the lap-top purchased by the next meeting. The lap-top will be used for GCA business, and will have quick-books and MS Office suite on it.

Volunteer Coordinator Michael Hardie will be working on a volunteer list. He will create a volunteer management data base for CGA.

Old Business

Karen Young reported on the Non-profit Center of South Sound’s membership luncheon held on February 24, 2010, held at the Tacoma Convention Center. The luncheon’s theme was “The Evolution of a Non-Profit Company.”

Laurel Lemke reported on the web-site restoration project. We are still experiencing a delay in keeping the web-site current. A few more members need to be trained on how to manage the site and to keep it up-to-date. After it went down, we experienced a glitch in the program. The program inserted A’s throughout the documents. It is suspected that this could be a virus. Karen Young will contact Steve Desilets and try to work the bugs out of the program.

The Lakewood Parks Dept has repaired the KIOSK that was damaged. Scott Williams, from the Lakewood Parks Dept indicated that they replaced the side boards and shingles.

New Business

On Sunday, April 25, 2010 a volunteer group (Bruce Gage, Indra Finch and friends ) have volunteered to set up for (dog-tag) insertions to identify markers. They are looking for a few more volunteers to help.

On Saturday, May 22, 2010 The Perimeter Project sponsored by OptumHealth Public Sector will be giving out free-bees something with their name/brand on it. An idea of the purple wrist bands, water bottles etc have been presented. Michael Hardie is entertaining ideas. If you have a good one – let Michael or Laurel know.

Laurel reported that State of Washington combined fund drive has received donations on our behalf. We need to provide verification of our non-profit status.

43 Markers have been ordered and will be delivered to the cemetery. Rosemary Chaput announced that Mt. View Cemetery has made arrangements for the pickup and delivery of the stones.

Becky Huber reported on the Heritage League of Pierce County.  Their purpose is;

  • To support individual and group efforts to preserve local history in Pierce County.
  • To advance the well-being of museums, historical societies, and heritage organizations throughout Pierce County.
  • To provide technical assistance and information to individuals and groups pertaining to heritage preservation in Pierce County.
  • To establish communication with state and local governments relative to heritage preservation matters.
  • To provide workshops and to train on their software package.

The GCA is now a member of the Heritage League of Pierce County; we joined the Heritage League for an annual $20. fee for dues. Becky Huber is willing to provide assistance with the WSH museum display for GCA.

Patty Tincher, from the Afterlife Planning spoke at our meeting. Patty described the type of services her business provides. Laurel asked that photographs be taken of all markers in the cemetery for reference. Through her franchise, Grave Groomers, she will offer a complimentary workshop on Saturday, April 17, 2010 from 10:00 am – noon.

Brochure update-We need to have our brochure updated to include current email, web site and the list of current officers.  We are in need of a volunteer for this project.

Folding Display & Carrying Case- The case needs to be reinforced.  Rosemary has the display board and planned to ask Patty Becker to reinforce the board.  The display is also in need of updating.

Join Hands is a youth project held on May 1, 2010. Lorna has asked a youth group (scout troop 53) to assist in cleaning headstones at the cemetery.

A motion was made to check into a card program that will assist GCA with correspondence, announcements, invitations etc…The program costs aprox $299. The cards are generated at a clearing house and mailed from there. Lorna explained that she uses it in her business and it has served her well. The decision was tabled until the next meeting.

It was moved and seconded that we have a Grave Groomers organization. It was suggested that dig teams be given a card as to what the procedures are for placing a head stone. Patty Tincher & Eric Haas have volunteered to do this.

A discussion insured concerning the purchase of proper equipment that is needed to dig and to place a head stone. We need sturdy equipment. Heavy duty shovels, picks, more wheel barrows, tarps etc. The subject was tabled until the next meeting.


Laurel Lemke announced that GCA has been asked to speak at the Tacoma Pierce County Genealogical Association’s meeting in September. The actual date and time have not been announced yet.


Joe Lewis – Will make sure the building is open and the room is set up for the next meeting.

Lorna Gifford – Working with Join Hands Day project, Spaghetti Feed Fundraiser and researching more information for the card program.

Karen Young-Typing the meeting minutes, checking with Steve Desilets regarding the web site “virus” and sending out thank you cards for donations received.

Rosemary Chaput – Will continue to monitor the progress of the flag pole, checking into better tools, providing Afterlife Planning/ Grave Grooming workshop treats.

Becky Huber-Contact the Historical Society, United Way, continue veteran research.

Kip  Engberg Will attend the Grave Grooming workshop so that he can be a team leader for the dig. Will also design a greeting card.

Michael Hardie – Volunteer Data-base, Will contact Steve Desilets.

Eric Haas & Patty Tincher-Will conduct the Grave Grooming workshop, take pictures and provide a step-by-step instruction card to give to dig teams.  

Upcoming Events



Grave Tender’s Workshop April 17, 2010 at the WSH Cemetery (10 am – Noon)


Lakewood Historical Society April 17, 2010 2:00 pm -Fundraiser HMS Pinafore at the Lakewood tickets are $20.

GCA Monthly Meeting April 19, 2010 (4:30 PM)

Lakewood Parks Appreciation Day April 24, 2010 (9:00 AM)

All you can eat Spaghetti dinner at Casa Mia on April 28, 2010. $6.99 each person


Mental Health Month 1st – 31st

Civil War Reenactment at Ft. Steilacoom Park May 1 & 2

NAMI Walk May 15th Magnuson Pk, Seattle Contact Rosemary Chaput at (253) 226-2143


Meeting was adjourned at 6:00 P.M. by Chairperson, Laurel Lemke. The next general meeting will be Monday, April 19, 2010, Board Meeting at 4:30 P.M. – 6:00 P.M. Held at the historic Fort Steilacoom, Quarters 2 building on Western State Hospital grounds.



Minutes submitted by:

Karen Young, Secretary