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History and tradition found at McKinney...

Continuing a tradition that has carried on for more than 80 years, the McKinney Cemetery Association again held its annual Memorial Day service at the cemetery on Saturday.

5/29/18 (Tue)

Continuing a tradition that has carried on for more than 80 years, the McKinney Cemetery Association again held its annual Memorial Day service at the cemetery on Saturday.

Personnel from the Minot Air Force Base accepted an invitation to conduct the ceremony honoring the veterans from the immediate Tolley and Sherwood areas.

The program opened with a prayer by Vicar Matt Albright.  The Minot AFB Honor Guard presented colors and also held the ceremonial flag fold. Lt. Col. Thomas Stayer gave the memorial address and Mark Zeltinger read the Veteran Roll Call.

Those in attendance gave the Pledge of Allegiance and sang the Star-Spangled Banner and America The Beautiful. Vicki Steinke and Naomi Haye read In Flanders Fields.

The ceremonial gun firing salute was a special three-volley firing using a replica 37-mm Army infantry cannon. The cannon was made by Joel Bohm of Loraine and donated to the Peterson-Bothun American Legion Post of Sherwood.

Music was provided by Michael O’Clair.

History of McKinney Cemetery

McKinney Cemetery, located 4 miles northwest of Tolley along the banks of the Mouse River, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. The three acre non-denominational burial site was founded in 1886 and is the oldest cemetery in Renville County. It is also the only remains of the townsite of McKinney. The site also includes a log cabin constructed in 1886 and moved to the cemetery in 1937.

Civil War veteran’s grave

One the oldest veteran’s grave sites found in the cemetery is that of Peter Bork, engraved with the years 1834-1904, who was a member of the Minnesota Infantry Co. B, 9th Regiment, during the Civil War.

The oldest grave marker found is that of Palm Olsgard, buried in 1894.

Another of the oldest grave sites found is that of  “Porter”... Father Robert J, 1860-1896, and Daughter Ethel E, 1890-1899.

Still another early day veteran’s grave marker reads Elmer Justin Irgens, June 15, 1919. He was an uncle of Martin Irgens of Tolley, who noted he had died of wounds suffered in WWI.

Presently, the cemetery is the final resting place for 51 veterans of the area.

The Cemetery Association was organized in 1911 and current officers are Martin Irgens, David Stark and Loretta Bucholtz. Many volunteers assist with the cemetery upkeep... Read EVERY WORD on EVERY PAGE of The Kenmare News by subscribing--online or in print!