Visiting a Cemetery on Halloween
We stopped into the historic cemetery in Tomslake, 20 minutes south of Dawson Creek on the day before Halloween.
This beautiful place is more than just a cemetery. It contains the cultural identity of the small Sudetan German Community whose members immigrated here in 1939 to escape persecution and death in Hitler's Germany.
A museum has been built to house the many artifacts donated by the community to tell the story of the journey to a new life of freedom in a new land.
The original Roman Catholic Church is now part of the museum. We stood on a stool and peeked in the windows. Nothing fancy, just hand built pews and some old pictures on the wall. Plastic flowers in a vase on the alter.
There is an impressive commemorative monument to the immigrants and their new home in Canada. It is quite emotional to read what the community went through for freedom. They came on transport ships and each ship and the date it sailed from Liverpool is listed along with the list of family members on the roster.
The cemetery itself is beautifully maintained with a simple rural backdrop. Entering through the iron gates was like entering a history book. The names on the granite headstones are mostly German and date back to the early 40's. I was struck by the short lives of many of the people laying to rest there.