Community rallies to the aid of Historic East Side cemetery

Call 4 Action

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–The “City of Good Neighbors” is coming through for a struggling historic cemetery on Buffalo’s East Side.

Concordia Cemetery has struggled through a long string of bad luck, going back 18 years when a former board member stole $150,000 from the treasury.

Last December a two-car accident at Koons and Walden avenues forced the driver of an SUV to lose control and slam into the cemetery’s wrought iron fence, causing extensive damage to the intricate 160-year-old metal work. A few days later, thieves stole two sections of the damaged fence.

Thieves were apparently at it again last week, breaking into the caretaker’s quarters and stealing most of Concordia’s groundskeeping equipment. Concordia officials contacted Call 4 Action and the community has responded.    

Generous donors have dropped off power tools, and Concordia Cemetery President David Speth said several others have called in pledges of lawn equipment.

“It is really wonderful the way they have responded with mowers, trimmers, other equipment to replace what we have lost.”

Concordia Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 400 military veterans, many of them decorated war heroes going back to the Civil War, and there is a Medal of Honor awardee buried there.

In his appeal for help, Speth says there is too much history at Concordia Cemetery to walk away, “We will not give up on Concordia, don’t give up on us. We are going to persevere. This place has gotten through 160 years, we are going to get through 160 more.”

If you have a lawnmower or trimmer that is in good working order, Concordia Cemetery officials would like to hear from you, at 674-6293.

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