Tonawanda News — In a sunny section of Acacia Park Cemetery, there stands a new granite memorial in the middle of a heart-shaped path. A trio of Bradford pear trees grows nearby, as do butterfly bushes and potted flowers, flanked by two stone benches.
“Wings of Love” is engraved on the front of the memorial. On the back are these words:
“There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One of these is roots; the other, wings.”
The Wings of Love Memorial Garden, which was recently dedicated at the cemetery, is the first of four planned memorial gardens created by the Western New York Perinatal Bereavement Network, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping parents and families who have lost a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, ectopic pregnancy or early infant death.
Christine Scott of Lancaster, executive director of the network, said the site will not only serve as a final resting place for a number of children, but a place for their families to commemorate their existence.
“It’s so important to remember them,” she said. “Parents really need the space to come to mourn their children, to sit and reflect and remember and grieve and cry and heal.
“Everybody grieves in their own way, but if we can give them some peace in their mind and hearts ... Everything we do in the network doesn’t take away their pain — but it gives them the chance to heal.”
Scott knows these things all too well. She was expecting her second son in 2000 when she became very ill, her kidneys failing five months into the pregnancy, and had to start undergoing dialysis. Several weeks later, during an ultrasound, she learned that her unborn son hadn’t made it. Jacob Wesley Scott was born still on May 27, 2000 — and his memory drives Scott to this day.