Group commemorates rock park for local youth lost to accident

DANSVILLE — It’s been exactly one year since the tragic accident took the lives of four youth members of the Dansville community. And while no amount of time can ever fully heal the wounds of such a tragedy, there was a small bit of healing when a small spot in Babcock Park was dedicated to the young lives that were lost.

On Monday evening in Babcock Park, a small ‘rock park’ was commemorated with a plaque that reminds everyone not of the tragedy, but of the way that the community came together in a moment of need to lift up those around them.

Dansville Strong Organizer Tina Peaty delivered some words about the children and how the new space was intended to be a place of honor and a place where the community could remember all the good things about Rebecca L. Earner, Ambra Eddleton, Justin Carpenter and Kyrstin Wolfanger.

"I want the families of those children from a year ago to know that they are not forgotten, and they won’t ever be forgotten. We want this rock garden to be a place all of Dansville’s children can be honored as needed. We wanted a special place where the children can continue to be children, and what better place than a park," said Peaty.

Peaty then delivered a few messages to the parents in attendance, reminding them that there was always support out there should they need it, and that the rock park was meant to be a safe place for them as well.

"We hope that you can come here and find solitude. We hope that you can come here and talk to whomever you want to. We want this to be a safe place in remembrance of those children," said Peaty. "And for the parents, there is support out here if you want it. And we will continue to do everything that we can to honor your children."

After the small ceremony, the large contingent of people stayed to color the sidewalk and paint rocks that were then laid out at the memorial.

Peaty also promised that this was not just a one-time event. She would be back every year with whoever wanted to once again honor those whose lives were taken far too soon.

"Every year, I will continue to do this, and I don’t care if only two people show up. Every year, we will honor your children," said Peaty.