Watch the video above: Local business reaches out to help rebuild cemetery destroyed by tornado
SASKATOON – Saskatchewan residents are left cleaning up a big mess after two tornadoes ripped through the south-central part of the province Saturday.
Colleen Seklich’s family has been in Kenaston for more than a century. The headstones of her great grandparents, grandparents and parents are in the Kenaston cemetery, which was hit by one of the tornadoes.
Seklich said some of her family’s stones were damaged.
“I just wanted to see what can be done and some of the older ones that were marble – I was checking with the representatives from Remco – and because the marble shales when it gets old it can’t be repaired,” she explained.
On Thursday, Remco Memorials sent an installation crew to repair as many of the monuments as possible, free of charge.
Remco Memorials is helping to repair gravestones at the Kenaston Cemetery after a tornado ripped through on Saturday pic.twitter.com/vvLtwAPVTm
— Amber Rockliffe (@AmberRGlobal) July 10, 2014
“Kenaston has been a big part of Remco for many years. They’re a very large supporter of us, so we figured it would be nice to give back,” said Jay Carnall, an operations manager with the company.
Over 40 gravestones were knocked over in the storm and dozens more were destroyed. The front gate to the cemetery was ripped out of the ground and many trees were flattened.
“I’ve never seen this kind of damage before,” said Michael Schlosser, an installer with Remco.
“Some of these stones are over 600 pounds, and for them to just be lifted off like that, it’s pretty amazing,” he explained.
The other tornado touched down in Outlook, Sask.
Ray Derdall and his son lost everything when it destroyed their farm.
Now Derdall’s neighbours have come together to hold a potluck fundraiser and silent auction to help rebuild.
“People have been very generous to give things. Even as generous as donating a load of gravel,” explained Justine Lustig, one of the organizers of the fundraisers.
“And another big donation has been $500 worth of installed seamless eavestroughs.”
Another company has offered to fix Derdall’s pivot, which was twisted by the tornado.
If you would like to make a donation to help fix Derdall’s farm, go to www.gofundme.com.