The Main Stream

Apr 16, 2012 8:01 PM

Jan. 8 remembrances held for safe keeping

TUCSON - Mementos from the Tragedy in Tucson have been stored for more than a year and on Monday they arrived at their new temporary home.

Sundt Construction Company has agreed to store the 277 boxes in a warehouse for safe keeping. Dollar Storage on Grant Road held the items for about eight months free of charge. The Bekin Company also offered free boxing, moving and transportation services.

The remembrances, which include everything from cards, stuffed animals, candles and flowers were collected from the three memorial sites: University Medical Center, Safeway shopping center and then Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' office.

Chrystal Carpenter, an archivist with the University of Arizona Special Collections said the boxes unleash a series of emotions for anyone involved with the project, "the last time we opened the materials was on January 8th. I started to reread materials and it rushes right back into your mind," she said.

The 1/8 Foundation was recently established as a non-profit organization. Stephen Brigham from The University of Arizona Health Network said about a dozen people, some of them victims, comprise the organization. Their goal will be to establish some sort of permanent display for the items, "it brings me back to that month where I'm really glad we saved these. I don't know what we're going to do with them in the future. Some tough decisions are coming up."

Brigham said the UA was working with other cities impacted by tragedies regarding how best to memorialize a tragedy while honoring a community in healing.

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