Sacrifices saluted with stars and stripes

first_imgMichael Damphoffer Sr.’s unassuming 3-foot-high gray tombstone in Old City Cemetery offers precious little insight into the colorful life he led. But when the cemetery’s visitors walk past his grave this weekend, they will know at least one thing about him: He was a U.S. soldier.The Vancouver Heritage Ambassadors placed small American flags next to the graves of Damphoffer and around 119 others on Friday and Saturday, in remembrance of their sacrifice, on the eve of Monday’s Memorial Day.Visitors might also notice that the fence that lines the front of the cemetery on East Mill Plain Boulevard has been repaired. The Vancouver Heritage Ambassadors paid more than $2,000 to have bent and broken fence pieces replaced this week.Old City Cemetery was established in 1867, and serves as the final resting place for around 8,000 people, including members of some of the city’s oldest families. As such, keeping up the cemetery is a way of preserving Vancouver’s identity.“This is pretty sacred ground for our history,” said Michael Parker, president of the 15-member Vancouver Heritage Ambassadors. “If it hadn’t been for them, we wouldn’t have Vancouver.”last_img read more