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New pet memorial helps remember lost loved ones
st. eliz pet mem
Pet owners gather Saturday at the Pet Memorial Gardens at St. Elizabeths Episcopal Church for a remembrance service for pets who have passed away. - photo by Hollie Lewis

Beloved pets who left their prints on the hearts of many were remembered Saturday during St. Elizabeth Episcopal Church’s first service of remembrance at its Pet Memorial Gardens.

“It helps to bring closure to losses in our life. It doesn’t help them go away, but it does help in that respect,” said the Rev. Dr. Clark Hubbard Jr.

Eagle Scout Nicholas Bradley first began creating the memorial July 2017 to help build the community. Bradley is a member of Troop 486, which is sponsored by the church.

“It was challenging, but I really appreciate the challenge and I love that I could do something to benefit the church and the community around us,” Bradley said. “Everyone has, let’s say, a graveyard or something. But people who are mourning their pets, they don’t really have anything, so this kind of opens it up to them.”

 Jaynne Reichert attended the dedication to honor her cat, Milky, of 16 years.  

“Milky was torn up by a dog years ago and put to sleep. It makes me closer to God and I truly believe that there is a pet heaven along with a people heaven – that we are all part of God’s grace and … I really believe that our animals are taken care of,” Reichert said.

Other companions remembered included Maude, Annie, Merry, Chris, Cricket, Max the Westie, Missy, Mot, Argus, Gimli, Nigel, Mr. Benedict, Rommy, Taffy, Chewy, Twinkie, Chubby and Lucky.

The Pet Memorial Garden is open to the community and is available to anyone who has lost a pet. To have a pet memorialized, there is a $25 donation, which goes toward maintenance and a plaque.  

Cremains may be deposited at the garden along with a plaque, or the pet can be remembered with a plaque alone.  The plaque features the owner’s and the pet’s names, as well as the date of death. 

Visitation to the memorial site is at any time.

 For more information, contact the church office at 912-727-2650.

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