A Special Salute to Alan MacKinnon

On this Memorial Day, Boston City Paper joins with the West Roxbury Veterans Community to salute and honor one of the finest Cemetery Directors in the history of Boston. Some people think the greatest thing that ever happened was when Congressman Joe Moakley dedicated the Garden of Honor Veterans Section at The Gardens. It was not. The greatest event took place when Alan took over operation and management of what we once called the German Cemetery. Under his leadership, veterans have been forever remembered and will never be forgotten. The cemetery today serves the entire community not only with the new veterans section, but also many other sections including in particular the Greek Orthodox, Catholic, Chinese and local communities. Recently, he went to Haiti to learn about the burying of large amount of people in times of national disaster. He is one of the most loved, respected and appreciated servants of God and of the people to ever lead a cemetery. Alan, we salute you!

By Paul Feeney, Publisher
Boston City Paper — May 29, 2010 Edition

Dear Alan,

Congratulations on recently completing the International Cemetery, Cremation, and Funeral Association Master's Program. You must be very proud of your accomplishments especially knowing you are the only cemetery executive in New England to have earned such a distinction.

Alan, since purchasing The Gardens, you have become an active community leader, serving the young and old alike with wonderful annual events. I appreciate all that you do in our community and I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

Again, congratulations on completing the Masters Program and best wishes during this holiday season.

Michael F. Rush, State Representative

The Parkway Community is fortunate to have Alan MacKinnon and The Gardens in our community. Alan and The Gardens helped the YMCA launch our new senior walking club. Alan gave them a weekly guided tour of the historic Brook Farm as well as provided healthy refreshments. Alan has also started a great Parkway family event — "Pumpkin Day". To see hundreds of smiling children jumping into piles of leaves, or participating in a relay race while enjoying homemade apple pie is an incredible sight. I have also participated in The Gardens' Memorial Day Services and urge all members of the community to witness this very respectful tribute to the men and women who serve this country. It is a pleasure to work with Alan and The Gardens — they truly have a positive impact on our community.

Marion Kelly
West Roxbury YMCA

Dear Alan,

I would like to thank you for sponsoring the Walk Boston;State Rep Walk with State Rep. Mike Rush and AgeWell West Roxbury on Tuesday, Sept. 23rd. Walking from Millenium Park through a clear wooded trail was a nice idea. Then, to be entertained, fed a delicious lunch and given surprise giveaways was a real treat for the senior citizens of West Roxbury. They were delighted, and I am still hearing about it! They think that you are such a nice guy anyway — many know you. But to do all this for them, well, you are A#1 now! They really appreciated what you did for them.

Your friend Eunice and your staff were so nice to the seniors. It seemed as though they enjoyed it as much as the seniors.

I think all of us involved in coordinating the event would say it was a great collaboration and we should continue working together. Perhaps a walk in the spring may be in the air.

I know we will be working together again soon, providing a great social for the seniors. This partnership is very exciting for AgeWell West Roxbury. Thanks again for all you have offered the seniors. Please know that they, and I, really appreciate it.

Cathy Slade, Coordinator
AgeWell West Roxbury

Dear Alan,

On Tuesday, October 7, 2008, Ethos friends, supporters and neighbors gathered together to honor Faulkner Hospital and celebrate our 35th anniversary. On behalf of everyone associated with that effort — Ethos staff, board, and volunteers — I want to thank you for making that event a tremendous success.

I am particularly pleased to report that, in addition to hosting a terrific party, Ethos raised over $100,000 for our mission of keeping elderly and disabled at home and out of institutions for as long as possible.

Thank you for helping to make this effort such a gratifying success.

With warmest regards,
Dale Mitchell, Executive Director
Ethos Boston

Warm thanks for the wonderful things you do and the special person you are.

Marge Delaney

Dear Alan,

I want to thank you for the very enjoyable day. The walk was great. I always wanted to walk and see where it (the trail) went. You keep that trail so nice. Also, the lunch was great. The cake looked to pretty to cut, but so gald you did!! Yum!

The flowers around your home looked beautiful. A shame the winter has to come and spoil them! I am going to give the Long family the information you gave me on their grand daughter's exact burial location. They found the Garden of Angels (they went back after the burial), but it was on a Sunday.

Thank you again,
Connie Kane

Dear Alan,

Thank you for hosting the WalkBoston group at your home. It was very generous of you.

All the best,
Jan Crosby

Dear Alan,

We just wanted to write and say thank you so much for Pumpkin Day. It was generous of you to give this day to our community. Not only did you have the day, give out free pumpkins, feed us, have games, etc. You also gave out gift cards to some families as well! We were one of the lucky families to receive an IParty Gift Card and we purchased a really cool big spider and an arm that crawls! It is people like you that remind me why I love living in West Roxbury so much!

Thank you again for the day and adding to our Halloween decorations in our yard! (We love Halloween)

The Dolan Family


Thank you very much for all the help you have given us.

The Costa Family

Dear Alan,

Thank you for all that you have done to make Memorial Day so memorable for me and my family.

Yours truly,
Blanche Sabina

We are proud members of the following organizations:
International Cemetery, Cremation, and Funeral Association (ICCFA), New England Cemetery Association (NECA) and Massachusetts Cemetery Association (MCA)