WESTERLO — Westerlo Rural Cemetery is called “rural” not because of its setting but because it was created to be a new kind of burial place — a restful place for the living as well as for the deceased.

Betty Filkins, vice president, and Steve Peck, Fundraising Committee of the Westerlo Rural Cemetery

At 70, Richard Stark, who wears all hats for the cemetery, looked for help from younger residents, worried he may have to close the association.

Eva Messer died in 1870. Her gravesite has intrigued visitors more than 100 years later, most recently a pair of men and a Facebook group interested in installing a new gravestone.

“He gave his life in the line of duty” says the new gravestone for Harold C. Mattice, a corporal with the New York State Police, buried in Berne’s Woodlawn Cemetery.

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