Spontaneous Shrines

"We who build shrines and construct public altars or parade with photographs of the deceased will not allow you to write off victims as regrettable statistics…They are, I believe, the voice of the people." –Jack Santino

Phoenix Park Falls, Creede, Colorado

I found some beautiful photographs of a very interesting shrine at Phoenix Park Falls in Creede, Colorado.  My friend, Weylin, took them several years ago while hiking in the area.  He knew I was interested in memorials, so he photographed this wooden cross for Jamie Matush that he found at the top of the falls.  I have never seen a memorial quite like this one before, so I’d like to share the photos here:

Photo by Weylin Ryan

Phoenix Park Falls from a distance

Photo by Weylin Ryan

Inscription reads: “JAMIE MATUSH (James III) 12/5/84 – 8/29/00”

Photo by Weylin Ryan

Inscription reads: “He slipped.  We wept.  He rose, ’cause he chose.”

Photo by Weylin Ryan

The shrine was constructed in a precarious spot at the top of the falls.  Apparently, there is a hill of slippery rocks just beneath it.

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3 thoughts on “Phoenix Park Falls, Creede, Colorado

  1. When i see these photos i wish i were there.

  2. Pam Sakala on said:

    Wow – that is both amazing and beautiful! What a perfect way to remember this guy. Isn’t it nice to know that we all make impressions on the hearts of others and somehow our life on earth will be remembered by those who love us?

  3. I had the privilege last summer to make a trip up to the falls with Jamie’s Dad. We sat there by the cross for almost an hour as he told us the story about that sad day many years ago when he and Jamie were climbing up the side of that beautiful waterfall. I know it wasn’t easy for him to relive the events of that day. Sharing how he watched his son slip and fall but there was nothing he could do to stop it. He went on to tell us how Jamie had lived his life for the Lord. Even at such a young age, Jamie had a relationship with his God that few people ever know.

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