Improvements to the Mausoleum

On Saturday, May 14, 2005, we were pleased to meet at 1:00 PM with Mr. Peter Christie (Superintendent of Cemeteries) and members of the cemetery works department. Without regard to priorities at the present time, our visit to the mausoleum suggested the following list of repairs and improvements:

Depending upon further reports, certain improvements can be undertaken. Much of the repair work can be done by a mason.
1. repairing the foundation and external deterioration as required,
2. making a container at the East end above the cemented remains using pilasters for receiving urns with ashes such as may be found in a columbarium,
3. repairing the door frame,
4. replacing the old iron door with a new one,
5. restoring an iron gate (with lock) which was once in front of the door,
6. placing an engraved "McGregor Ross" (as shown at the top of this page) stone above the entrance, and
7. using a rough gray stucco with a sealer to cover the graffiti and discourage such defacing in the future.


I just read an article, The family vault (written by Peter Desbarats of London, Ontario). It was printed on page A22 of The Globe and Mail on Thursday, June 30, 2005, and I found that I could relate to his experience with a great deal of sympathy and understanding. The only missing element in his situation is that of the mysteries surrounding the "family vault" in the Old Union Cemetery at Waterdown. [It is a coincidence that the date of his article, Thursday, June 30, should coincide with the date of the beginning of our personal tale.]

The history of the McGregor Ross Mausoleum since June 30, 1973, is still a huge blank at this time ... aside from the fact that it "was broken into sometime in 1998 or 1999". Improbable as it may sound at present, it is not beyond the realm of possibility that the "vault" has been the site of more than one crime scene. A proper investigation of the facts is necessary before we reconsider my aunt Phoebe's recommendation that the entrance be bricked in.

At almost five months since our visit to the family mausoleum, I am becoming extremely disappointed by the lack of information. The future of the structure must inevitably be based upon its past history and the absence of any approval for the alterations. Ultimately, my Aunt Phoebe's recommendation may be the only viable option, although it is not the most desirable one (in my personal opinion).


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