The Dearly Departed Players returned to the Dunmore Cemetery for another successful year of historical walking tours with almost 700 people in attendance for tours on Oct. 2 and 9.
Under the direction of Julie Esty, The Dearly Departed Players relayed stories of some of the cemetery residents. The theme of the tour this year addressed some of the struggles experienced over the last two years due to the pandemic. But, in usual Dearly Departed Player fashion, some lighthearted moments won the day and the tours ended with messages of hope.
The cemetery was decorated in a harvest theme thanks to the Dearly Departed Players, Lackawanna Historical Society, Space Time Mead and Cider, Carlucci Golden DeSantis Funeral Home, Gertrude Hawk, Scranton Films, CaPAA/Ritz Theater, and Kim Bochicchio.
According to Esty, the harvest decor has expanded the reach of the two-day event. The harvest décor attracted visitors to drive through the cemetery in the week between the tours to view the décor. A number of families were noted using the décor for family photos.
In 2019 The Dearly Departed Players assisted descendants of Merrill’s Marauder’s in obtaining a Congressional Gold Medal for the famed fighters who battled fearlessly in World War II. The Dunmore Cemetery is the final rest of Robert Nicholson, a member of the legendary group of soldiers. A high point of the tours this year was the attendance of Marauder Nicholson’s 76-year-old son, John Nicholson of Hopatcong, NJ. His father’s service was recognized during the Oct. 2 tour.
Esty stated that after two years of drive-through tours due to the pandemic,the Players were glad to be back in the cemetery and seeing their wonderful audience in person once again.
Tours for 2022 are over but the Dearly Departed Players will return to the Dunmore Cemetery next year on the first two Sundays in October for an all new tour.