Thanks to community donations, gravestone will be replaced
“I have fought a good fight. I have finished my course. I have kept the faith.”
This quote from the Timothy 4:7 of the King James Bible, could be seen engraved on Alexander Stuber’s marble headstone at his gravesite, until it was destroyed by vandalism at the Camas Cemetery more than a week ago.
But thanks to donations from local individuals and businesses, a new monument for the man who was born in 1866 and died in 1908 will be erected. It will include the quote as well as the image of a rose that was also a featured in its original design.
The new headstone has been ordered by Vancouver Granite Works, which is owned by Joey Fuerstenberg and his parents, Washougal residents Bruce and Vicki Fuerstenberg. The family agreed to pay for half of the $1,000 cost to replace the monument.
“I always hate to see vandalism in cemeteries,” said Joey Fuerstenberg on Monday. “With no family being around, there was no way for the stone to be fixed because of what those hooligans did. We feel [Stuber] deserved to have that monument there, and we wanted to help make sure that happened.”
Since word got out a week ago about the effort to raise money to replace the headstone, other members of the community, including individual citizens and businesses like Straub’s Funeral Home, stepped up to donate the remaining $500 needed. According to Camas Police Chief Mitch Lackey, the contributions included a number of small donations, in addition to one of $200.
“What a great response from the city and the community,” he said.
Joey Fuerstenberg said the new granite monument and base, approximately 40 inches tall, could take up to 12 weeks to arrive. The engraving will take place at the Vancouver shop.
The headstone at Stuber’s grave site was one of 15 that had been discovered on Oct. 23 pushed off of their pedestals and onto the ground. Much of the damage took place in the southeast “pioneer section” of the cemetery.
On Oct. 25, city of Vancouver public works crews joined those from the city of Camas, with the help of equipment from the Port of Camas-Washougal, to re-mount 14 of the headstones onto their bases. Only Stuber’s was damaged to the point that it needed to be replaced.
On Oct. 24, Michael D. Garwood, 21, of Camas, was arrested on 15 counts of violating laws governing the protection of cemeteries and one count of second degree malicious mischief. However, according to reports the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said today that it would not file charges against him, although Garwood could be charged in the future following additional investigation.