By Pat Pratt
The Troy Genealogical Society is currently working to honor the legacy of several veterans interred in the city cemetery.
The society is working to raise funds to clean the headstones of about 40 government-issued markers belonging to veterans. The work is being planned for April, when the weather is warmer. In the interim, members are compiling service records and history of those veterans in an effort to tell their stories.
“We have some members of the community, such as the Patriot Guard and VFW Auxiliary, who are also interested in helping out,” Rachel Korte, society treasurer said. “So we would like to, the day of, read a little bio of the veteran so they know whose headstone they are cleaning.”
Korte said there are about 44 markers in the cemetery that are government-issued, but as researchers uncover more details, that number could rise to as many as 60. Currently, the society is focused on government-issued monuments as private markers would require family permission.
Those involved in the project also plan to take before and after photos to document the condition of the stone. The cleaning process requires special chemicals that will not damage the stone or lettering.
Korte said the chemicals used here will be the same as those used at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington D.C.
“The chemical I use is a cleaner called D2 and its the same cleaner that they use in Arlington,” Korte said. “It’s a little expensive. It’s about $62 a gallon and you don’t dilute it. You just spray it over the stone and it will work over time. Other than that it’s just water and some natural brushes.”
An auction was recently held to raise funds to purchase products to clean the monuments, but the society is also accepting donations to help with the cause. Kort said she is currently working on a supply list and donation information is available on the group’s Facebook page.