The simple headstone for William Macleod in the veterans area of the Fort Langley Cemetery lists him as “Pte. Seaforth of C” and gives his date of birth, 1922 and his passing, in 2001.
It reads “Lest we forget.”
On Saturday afternoon, more than a dozen volunteers from the First Fort Langley Scout Troop showed that Pte. Macleod and the more than 300 other soldiers in the cemetery are remembered.
They kneeled at the markers and gently, patiently cleaned them.
“It’s really simple,” said Section Scouter Johnathan Meads.
“It’s a bucket of water and it’s brooms and brushes, toothbrushes, and really we’re just trying to clean each headstone off, remove all the mud, the gunk that builds up. It’s a chance to get them all clean and looking resplendent, ready for Remembrance Day.”
As the scouts gently scoured the headstones, Meads explained that it was the first time the newly-formed Fort Langley scout troop (formerly part of the Walnut Grove troop) has tended to the veterans.
“This is our first opportunity to do it.”
Previously, the scouts have helped the Lions club set up the Remembrance Day ceremony in the morning, and the idea of cleaning the headstones came up when they got talking about “other opportunities to do some community service” Meads said.
The work counts toward their Chief Scouts award, he added.