CASPIAN—The sixth annual walking tour of a cemetery in West Iron County will take place at Resthaven Cemetery on Wednesday, June 12, from 6 to 8 p.m. The cemetery is located on U.S. 2 near the junction of M-73.
This will be the second of four tours of this cemetery, with two more to take place in future summers. The cemetery areas which will be covered in this year’s edition are Sections 2, 4, 6 and 8, which is a veterans section. These areas are just west of the cemetery’s mausoleum.
Dale Safford’s research about people buried in this cemetery was done from newspaper archives at the Iron County Reporter, as well as from Sandra Thoney’s recently published book “Iron River Michigan: The Good Old Days,” which became available in April.
The tour will pause at the graves of early settlers Frederick Applin, Archie MacRae and David Tarsi; John Scalcucci, who was involved with Rum Rebellion; mine victim Joseph Zyskowski whose death resulted in a lawsuit; murder victims Albert Long, Fr. James Lenhart, Leo Reitmeyer and Kenny Autio; mechanic Wallace Varney, who owned many cars in his lifetime; and exceptional golfer Joe Bociek.
Iron County’s first military person to die in World War II was Lt. Louis Contardi, who will also be featured.
The graves of Peter Baldyga, Leona Swanson and Mary Wagner, who each lived to be over 100 years old, will be recognized, and several unique, beautiful and especially well-tended headstones will be featured.
Several people who met their deaths in unusual manners will also be mentioned.
Guest speakers scheduled to assist Safford by sharing stories of people buried in this portion of the cemetery are Fred Jacobs, Lisa Irish Wright, Betty Petroski, Marilyn Budzak, Kim Stafford, Pam Bociek and Jenny Schive, and Mike Golas.
Those wishing to take part in the tour are asked to meet at 6 p.m. at the cemetery in the area of the mausoleum building.
A $3 per person donation is requested, with the money being given to the Iron County Museum and the Iron County Genealogical Society.
If it is raining on the evening of June 12, the tour will be rescheduled for Wednesday, June 19.