Ginger Goodwin’s grave has been vandalized. Someone covered the red hammer and sickle emblem with black paint. Photo supplied.

Ginger Goodwin’s Cumberland cemetery grave desecrated

Just days before the Miners Memorial weekend, Ginger Goodwin’s grave has been desecrated.

Carlos Flores made the discovery June 15, when he visited the gravesite to “clean up and repaint the tombstone” of the iconic leader of the local labour movement, in preparation for the annual weekend commemorating the storied history of Cumberland.

RELATED: Miners Memorial weekend June 21-23

The red hammer and sickle on the head of the tombstone, symbolic of the socialist movement, had been completely removed, with what Flores deduced was acid.

“The dark streaks are probably muriatic acid with which the vandals tried initially to remove the red paint from the symbol and it didn’t work; so they probably came back and used a chisel to erase it.”

Flores said an inspection of neighboring tombstones indicated that Goodwin’s was the only tombstone vandalized, and insinuated a targeted act.

“No other grave has apparently received the criminal treatment inflicted to the memory of one of the most cherished and important labour leaders in B.C.,” he said, via email. “This was not a random act; it was delivered, persistent, targeted and planned.”

“Canada is not immune to the awakening of neo-fascist ideologies, extreme right-wing political parties, and intolerant and racist ideologies that have gained [a] foothold in Europe and the U.S.”

“I’m very disappointed to hear what has been done to Ginger Goodwin’s gravesite,” said Cumberland Mayor Leslie Baird. “It’s unfortunate that people feel so strongly that they want to desecrate someone else’s property. I know he is a controversial figure, but he is part of our history.”

Flores performed a makeshift repair to the tombstone, although he suggested the damage done was beyond repair.

“I repaired what I could, but the damage to this historical site is probably irreparable.”

“He has done a nice job of trying to repair it and we certainly thank him for wanting to do that,” said Baird.

Goodwin is honoured with a graveside vigil every year as part of the Miners Memorial weekend. Baird said that tradition will continue Saturday at 1 p.m. She expects this act of vandalism to galvanize the community.

“It’s going to mean more to the people that are coming [to Miners Memorial weekend],” said Baird. “They will be upset when they see what has been done, because it hasn’t all been [repaired]. They will hear what was done, and it will be upsetting to many people.”



terry.farrell@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

The 34th annual Miners Memorial, presented by the Cumberland Museum and Archives, June 21-23, is “a celebration of workers and their families, and a call for a renewed commitment for safe and healthy workplaces, justice and equity, and bread and roses for all.”

For a complete schedule of events, go to minersmemorial.ca

 

Ginger Goodwin’s Grave pre-desecration. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Carlos Flores of Victoria did what he could to repair the grave marking that had been removed. Photo supplied.

Just Posted

Commemorative plaque stolen from Sandwick Cairn in Courtenay

The peacekeepers plaque has been stolen from the Sandwick Cairn on Dingwall… Continue reading

Painter Fiona Ackerman starts North Island College fall 2019 Artist Talk Series

Acclaimed Vancouver-based painter Fiona Ackerman will join North Island College as the… Continue reading

Comox Valley Record readers ‘Take us Along’ on holidays

When it comes to spreading the news, readers of the Comox Valley… Continue reading

Some Cumberland businesses closing for climate strike rally Friday

A Climate Strike Cumberland Solidarity Rally is set for outside the Cumberland municipal office

Comox contestant competes on Great Canadian Baking Show

Andrea Nauta auditioned for the show before but was lucky second time around

VIDEO: B.C. man accused of assaulting sex worker loses temper in interrogation

Defence lawyer says statements made by accused Curtis Sagmoen should be deemed inadmissible

VIDEO: Fire destroys Williams Lake strip club targeted by past arson attempts

Diamonds and Dust Entertainment Lounge destroyed by fire, crews on scene

Second bat found at Greater Victoria elementary school tests positive for rabies

Island Health confirms second rabies case, this time in Saanich

B.C. man guilty of first-degree murder in Yukon killing

Edward James Penner, 22, was given the mandatory life sentence for the 2017 slaying of 25-year-old Adam Cormack

Woman stabbed at least five times in Nelson during random attack

Victim is in hospital, suspect is in police custody

Victoria man spots online photo of his totem pole 11 years after it was stolen

Mark Trueman restored the pole himself before it was stolen off of his property in Duncan

‘I’d do it again,’ says B.C. man who swam naked, drunk in Toronto shark tank

David Weaver, of Nelson, was drunk when he went to Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto on Oct. 12 2018

How to react to Trudeau’s racist photos? With humility, B.C. prof says

‘We are now treating racism as a crime that you cannot recover from’

Horvat paces Canucks to 6-1 pre-season win over Oilers

Vancouver improves to 3-1 in NHL exhibition action

Most Read