Pittsburg High Key Club cleans up Mount Olive Cemetery

PITTSBURG, Kan. – Memorial Day…Veterans Day. Two of the most recognizable days that we remember our fallen servicemen and women. Some Pittsburg High School Key Club Members added today, to that list, as they spent their Sunday cleaning the headstones of veterans at Mount Olive Cemetery.

“I just think it’s really rewarding to watch a group of people like this come out and do something good.” Emily Reams is a junior at Pittsburg High School and decided to join some of her fellow Key Club members at Mount Olive Cemetery to take care of those, who once took care of us. “It’s important to make sure that those headstones are treated with respect and that they look nice and that we highlight that these people were people who fought for us.”

For Reams, giving back is just second nature. “I have always been taught to give back to the community that I live in no matter where I am, so, just volunteering and giving back is something that’s, it’s very much a staple in my life.”

Ashaln Brooks is a senior at Pittsburg High and this is her second year coming out to cleanup the headstones. “I just think it’s really cool to be able to clean the headstones that some people forgot, the ones that we clean are the ones that have been sitting out here the longest, like, they’re veterans, they’re Confederate soldiers, they’re Union soldiers, and a lot of them don’t have family that’s alive anymore, so I think it’s really cool just to give them a new life and make it to where people can actually read their name now and they can be remembered a little bit more.”

One by one, members of the Key Club cleaned each headstone, which, Brooks says, a year ago, was a more difficult task. “When we first started we only had maybe four people that were actually willing to get up at 11:00 on a Sunday and come clean headstones, but now it’s grown a lot, I think a lot more people are realizing how cool it can be and how fun it is to clean headstones and how important it is to the community, and it’s really cool to see people, especially freshman, 14-year-olds coming out here to do it.”