Letter from Susan Ashby

Dear Ron;

The Jonestown Memorial at Evergreen Cemetery has been a long time coming.  After many broken promises of a memorial wall we finally have one in place.

My cousins, Ronnie and Nancy Sines, died in Jonestown.  Their parents were devastated.  I’ve watched that pain for too many years.  Their father, Paul Sines, has since passed away having never seen a memorial to his children.

At the 20th Anniversary my Aunt, Barbara Sines, gave a substantial amount for a memorial wall that was promised year after year.  It never happened.  She is now 82 years old and in poor health.  She was very concerned that the wall wasn’t going to happen.  All she wanted was to see a memorial wall with her children’s names on it.  To know that they wouldn’t be forgotten.  She waited and waited for that wall.

Finally in 2009, I got involved in attempting to find out the status.  I discovered it probably would never go up because they didn’t have the money to finish it and it was too large for the hill in the cemetery.  My aunt was heart broken.

And now…after all of that we have a memorial.  I can’t even begin to say how important that is.  It means so much to my Aunt Barbara…even in poor health she is determined to come to see it.  The pain she has will never go completely away but she can live the remaining years of her life knowing there is a memorial.  That is important to me.  She is a wonderful lady and deserves some measure of happiness. 

I am so very thankful to Evergreen Cemetery for all they have done to facilitate this memorial.  My cousins are not buried there but that doesn’t make it less important.  I thank them for all they have done and am truly sorry that they must now fight so my aunt can have the peace and joy she deserves.

The dedication service is very important.  It is the funeral we were not allowed to have (believe it or not…there wasn’t a pastor in So. Cal that would do a funeral).  It is a time shoe love and support to my aunt.  It is time to have closure and this dedication service will help do that.  But the pain will never go away.

Personally,  Ronnie and Nancy were my age.  I was robbed of watching them become what they could have become.  I was robbed of their love and friendship.  This service is important to me.  I miss them dearly.  I never got to say good bye.

Submitted by:

Susan Ashby