All the gardens are different, with unique personalized touches. “Each one has its own story,” Tom McPhee, Cabrini public safety officer and member of the Parents of Murdered Children, said. The Living Memorial Gardens, in Upper Chichester, are home to about 40 gardens.
Each has been planted and designed to honor the memory of a murder victim.
Plots of land are offered for free to anyone who is coping with the loss of a murder victim. Those interested are allowed to choose any area on the 3.5 acres of land.
Then, they can place and arrange items within the garden.
Tricycles, stepping stones, flags, flowers and teddy bears are just a few memorable items that can be seen among the gardens.
A light-up angel that was dedicated by Crozer Hospital acts as a guardian, or protector, of the gardens.
The county had originally donated the property. Barb DiMario, the founder of the Delaware County Chapter of the Parents of Murdered Children, worked with volunteers to clear the land.
“It was lots of hard work but lots of fun,” DiMario said.
Now the gardens act as an escape for those who struggle daily with the pain of losing a loved one.
“It’s hard to believe something so pretty could come out of a tragedy,” Stephen Barrar, Pa. State Rep., said.