MSU Centennial Project - - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

MSU Centennial Project

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Minot State University is celebrating its centennial this year.

MSU officials are asking everyone associated with the campus to be part of the "Power of 100 Service Challenge."

The idea is to develop ways to contribute something meaningful to the community.

MSU professor Mark Timbrook organized an effort to honor military veterans and spruce up the place where they are remembered.

Emily Medalen takes us to Rosehill Cemetery for the story.

100 years at Minot State, to Mark and Eunice Timbrook, means 100 hours and more spent cleaning headstones of our fallen veterans in Minot.

(Mark Timbrook, MSU Center for Extended Learning) "It pays back to our veterans. Ones that have, you know, paid the ultimate sacrifice or those that have served and are buried here. But it also gives back to the community from Minot State."

The process of cleaning headstones isn't exactly an easy one.

Specific chemicals and tools are used gently on the marble to prevent deterioration of the stone, and there is also a certain technique.

(Mark Timbrook, MSU Center for Extended Learning) "There's actually certain chemicals you should use and a specific method that you use for cleaning marble headstones. So you dont use harsh detergents, you don't use bleach, and things like that on headstones, because you can actually destroy the stone."

The plan for the cleaning crew is to take a picture before they start working, after they finish, and the next day.

This is because the D2 chemical used cleans by itself over time, so the final look will change overnight.

Being gentle on the marble is important, especially because these headstones deal with harsh North Dakota winters.

(Mark Timbrook, MSU Center for Extended Learning) "You notice the bristles aren't bending. I'm just doing a nice gentle brush."

Cleaning all 170 stones at Rosehill Cemetery is expected to take until September, but volunteers from Minot State say that this is just a small way for them to not only give back to our community, but our veterans and their families.

(Niki Roed, MSU Staff) "I hope that someday, someone will be doing this for me and keeping my stone clean as well."

(Merri Jo Connole, Asst. Financial Aid Director) "This is a very special project. I think it's important that we all remember the service that these men and women have provided to our country and as part of our service project at Minot State, I thought that this was a really important thing to do."

(Heidi Benavides, MSU Nursing) "I think that each of the gravestones has a history and each person is unique. And I think like Niki said, someday we hope that somebody will be doing this for us and making sure that the grounds are kept up."

(Kris Warmoth, Dean for Extended Learning) "I would only hope that someone would take this much interest in my marker that tells a little bit about when I was here, walking in Minot, and the whole historical background. And the fact that they're veterans, I think, makes it all the more special."

In Minot, Emily Medalen, KX News.

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