Something (not so) spooky lives right next to the airport, but not many know about it. Where furever friends have been laid to rest since the 1920s, the Brown Pet Cemetery sits right across the street from CMH’s Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting station on Sawyer Road.
Started by Veterinarian Dr. Walter A. Brown, the cemetery is home to over hundreds of burials. While it is no longer in use today, walking through the rows makes way for some reminiscing on pop culture phenmomens based on the names of the dearly departed. From Rags to Lassie, and Little Blinkie to Stinky Bill – you’re sure to both giggle and tear up when reading the headstones.
Last week, during a team meeting, we decided that writing a blog post on the cemetery would be a fun nod to the Halloween season. I stopped after work that evening to grab some photos and walk through the graveyard a bit, taking in the magnitude of what these pets once meant to their owners. I saw many dogs, cats, and even a bird or two. The headstones, while some are very old and wearing away through natural environmental conditions, are unique in their own right. Some even have portraits of the pets and beautiful sentiments to the short, but important, life they lived.
“In loving memory of our Pat, 1930-1939. A faithful, true companion. You made us happy. We will never forget. Margaret and Harry Davis.”
“Danny Boy. In our hearts forever. Mom and Dad.”
“Brownie. Springer Spaniel. May 19 1932 – June 4, 1947. My trustful and faithful companion in his sleep. A visit here returns memories of yesterday. Geo A. Baesmann”
While many who have visited have remarked about the jet engines that fly overhead on their departure or approach, I found it to be quite enjoyable. As someone who loves aviation and my pets, combining these two things was a special way to end my Thursday. It was still very quiet, aside from the crunching of leaves from squirrels running around (or at least I hope they were just squirrels…).
If you do decide to visit, please be kind. My hope, and I know a hope for others, is that this place continues to be sacred for those who buried their furry family members here many years ago.