Terry and Gary Duchien

Twin brothers Terry and Gary Duchien, lifetime Washington residents, were busy placing American flags on several veterans’ graves in their family’s plot. 

Before researching the City of Washington’s website concerning its city cemetery, these words were jotted down on a note pad, “How is Veterans Day, Glendale Cemetery in Washington, Illinois, American Heritage Girls Troop IL2415, and December 19, 2020 connected?”

A drive to the cemetery was in order.  There was a definite serendipitous meeting on November 10 when this writer stopped to visit with Terry and Gary Duchien.  These lifetime city residents were busy placing American flags on several veterans’ graves in their family’s plot.  The men were very willing to explain what they were doing to honor veterans in their family.

The history of Glendale Cemetery goes back to Washington’s founding father, William Holland.  Holland and his wife, Jane, filed a quit claim deed for an area (a half of an acre) to be used as a burial ground on June 27, 1849.  David and Hannah Keyes donated a piece of property also for the cemetery at the same time.  A donation for the newest part of the cemetery was made by Dr. Lillian Rich, according to Terry Duchien.

As the Duchien brothers continued conversing, they related that their family plot consisted of 19 graves.  The graves of Clarence and Wanda Kyes told of their deaths during the Spanish flu of 1918.  Additional graves of the Duchien family can be found in the oldest part of Glendale Cemetery.  More interesting facts about the cemetery can be found on the City of Washington’s website.

A little more was to be learned about American Heritage Girls Troops.  Washington’s troop is active.  “American Heritage Girls is a Christ-centered character and leadership development program for girls five to 18 years of age.  AHG is dedicated to the mission of building women of integrity through service to God, family, community, and country,” states its website. 

Its members in AHC Troop IL2415 are collecting donations for wreaths to be placed at Glendale Cemetery.  Donation amount is $15 or any amount desired.

There were two red flags near the graves of the Duchien family veterans.  These flags were placed at the graves so that Wreaths Across America volunteers could place wreaths at the graves on December 19, 2020.

Without intending to, connected facts can lead one to find out how history can be linked to the present day.  There is no greater joy than to know that Washington’s founding father, William Holland, had the settlers here in mind as he thought of a place of rest for them.

If you have questions or would like to order a wreath by phone, contact Lucy Twait at (309) 645-6726.