This Columbarium is located in one of the oldest churches in Wichita. There has always been a debate over who was first, St. John’s or First Presbyterian. Regardless, St. John’s has been around since 1869. The church was started by John Price Hilton and the first worship services were held in the D.S. Munger home, which now sits on display at the Old Cowtown Museum.
I believe there are about ten people interred here. This one sits under the sanctuary in the basement, but it gets outside light through beautiful stained glass windows.
The most famous grave belongs to Dr. Susan Dianne Martinson Duerksen (November 8, 1952 – January 27, 2015). She was a doctor in Wichita.
I did not know much about Columbariums. The church’s website explains that, “A columbarium is a sacred place within a church set apart for the memorialization of loved ones lost, and for the care, placement and inurnment of their cremated remains. A columbarium allows one to visit a final resting place in a serene interior environment. A single space for “inured” cremains is called a niche. The interior dimensions of each niche are: 10” high and 10” wide and deep. A simple cross and brass marker plate containing the decedent’s engraved name and dates of birth and death is affixed to the exterior facing of the niche.”
Check out Sedgwick County’s other Cemeteries.