The Story of the Stuff: Issues in Temporary Memorial Preservation Main MenuWhat Are Temporary Memorials?A DefinitionThe Problem of Temporary MemorialsEssential Questions to BeginCase StudiesCase Studies IntroductionTexas A&M & the Bonfire Memorabilia CollectionCase StudyVirginia Tech & the April 16th Condolence ArchiveCase StudySandy Hook Elementary & the Story of the StuffCase StudyFurther StudyQuestions & Recommended ReadingsAshley Maynor5adce0171052a8cc24f02b7c0a0c96951154dfb5Self-Reliant Film
12015-09-16T17:17:22-07:00Ashley Maynor5adce0171052a8cc24f02b7c0a0c96951154dfb560701Film still of Chris Kelsey in the Newtown warehouse.plain2015-09-16T17:17:22-07:00The Story of the Stuff v2Ashley Maynor5adce0171052a8cc24f02b7c0a0c96951154dfb5
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12015-09-16T17:17:22-07:00The Town Assessor1Chris Kelseyplain2015-09-16T17:17:22-07:00
Chris Kelsey worked as the Newtown assessor but found himself managing the logistics of the preservation process after the tragedy. After several months of managing the warehouse that stored the stuff--which soon totaled over 65,000 teddy bears along with tens of thousands of other donations, Kelsey had an opinion about what should be done in the long run:
"The stuff that was at the memorial was all to be sacred soil. Originally [the plan] was the burn everything and then take the ashes so it would be a permanent part of a permanent park."
There's nothing wrong with putting it on display, but speaking from somebody who has dealt with it, I don't need to. I think putting it in concrete is a better way to preserve it than putting it on display for fifty, sixty years, what do you do with it then?"
In a digital world, I think the pictures are really good, because you can put it out there in a digital environment and everybody gets to enjoy them. We don't necessarily need to set aside a museum. ...Living through all the letters, it was kind of like living in a wake."