Now and Then: A journey to mark 'Old Ones'
June 16, 2023
I just got back from a car trip to the West Coast. My cousin Kaija Kivimaki from Finland, my sister Denise, and my cousin Patsey Koivisto VanderVeer from Floodwood went with me on a mission to bring a headstone for my great-grandfather's grave in Washtucna, Washington.
The headstone came from a granite boulder I found in a wooded part of my Automba property. I had it cut in half and an inscription put on each section. One half of the stone was marked "Emil Riitijoki Reed, Ita Aure, Finland, 1884-1918."
Emil came to the U.S. in about 1906 and ended up working on the Iron Range and later Cros...