If you lost your home and the cremated remains of a loved one were inside, a team of archaeologists and forensic canines are able to find and recover them. Alta Heritage Foundation is a non-profit organization that is offering this service at NO COST. All members of the team are volunteers. We're asking for donations to defray the expenses associated helping wildfire victims.
Alta Heritage Foundation is currently mobilizing to help wildfire victims in Oregon and California. We need your support.
Drought-like conditions in the western United States have contributed to a series of massive catastrophic wildfires. Indeed, the most destructive wildfires in recent history have occurred in the past few years devastating whole communities, causing billions of dollars damages, and resulting in the loss of life. Oftentimes families keep the cremated remains of previously deceased family members within the home in urns or other vessels, which become lost when the wildfire destroyed their home. Human cremains are endowed with significant sentimental meaning and the loss of these heirloom objects contributes to the emotional trauma suffered by wildfire victims. A volunteer group of archaeologists and specially trained dogs are working within wildfire disaster areas to help fire victims recover the cremains of family members. Archaeological skills originally intended for studying the past are adapted to address contemporary issues and to solve problems thrust on us by current events. Cremains recovery is a humanitarian effort that often motivates archaeologists to perform this emotionally difficult work, and it requires a commitment to scientifically controlled field recovery and documentation of human cremains, personal effects, and other physical evidence. As archaeologists become engaged as recovery workers their work can be instrumental in providing “closure” for wildfire victims and for others involved.
- Jeri Reno
- Marie Lockette
- Stacey Jacobson
- Jessica Bochart-Leusch
- Katrina Cunningham
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