Alan J. MacKinnon, President
Certified Cemetery Executive, ICCFAU Masters Program Graduate and
Past Secretary/Treasurer: Three Years Massachusetts Cemetery Association
Mr. MacKinnon started his cemetery career at Gethsemane Cemetery in West Roxbury 28 years ago, first as grounds foreman for 5-1/2 years, then as general manager for seven years. In 2002, he formed a non-profit corporation called The Gardens at Gethsemane which acquired Gethsemane. He is designated as a Certified Cemetery Executive and a graduate of the International Cemetery Cremation and Funeral Association University (the only cemetarian in Boston and one of three in the entire state of Massachusetts) and has served as Secretary/Treasurer on the board of the Massachusetts Cemetery Association.
For his community involvement, he was named Citizen of the Year for 2003 by a Boston business and professional association with over 500 members.
An incredibly generous person, Alan lends his time, talents and energy to a seemingly endless list of organizations and professional groups. He is the past president of the West Roxbury and Roslindale Kiwanis, having served at the helm of the organization for over two years. He also served as President for three years for the Boston West Chapter of Gideons International. He holds memberships in the Roslindale Board of Trade, West Roxbury Rotary, the Fraternal Order of Masons, Wellesley Lodge and the Boston Elks Lodge #10, West Roxbury.
Mr. MacKinnon also serves on the Board of Managers of the YMCA and is a member in good standing of the Massachusetts, New England, and International Cemetery Associations. He also is a member of the West Roxbury Historical Society and was honored at the First Annual West Roxbury Main Streets Gala with The Star of West Roxbury.
Alan has donated untold hours to many groups in need of his expertise. He helped to revitalize the East Parish Burying Ground, a historic cemetery in Newton, in preparation for the Association for Gravestone Studies Conservation Workshop. He has collaborated on community projects with the Evening Garden Club of West Roxbury and helped to beautify the landscaping at the Boston Aid to the Blind.
On Memorial Day 2000, Mr. MacKinnon enlisted the aid of the beloved late Congressman Joe Moakley to dedicate the newly created Veterans Memorial Monument at The Gardens at Gethsemane. The ceremony is now a traditional Memorial Day event honoring the sacrifices of our military in the community, with almost 1,000 in attendance last year.
In 2008, now to the delight of many children and families in the community, he developed an annual Pumpkin Day that he and his staff host at The Gardens. In 2010 over 2,000 people attended. The day included free pumpkins for the children, face painting, snacks, pumpkin bowling, moonwalks, airbrushed tattoos (temporary of course) and many other activities for all to enjoy.
A Message from The President
Alan J. MacKinnon, CCE Certified Cemetery Executive
When I think about my ministry here at The Gardens, I have to thank God for allowing me the opportunity to help people at one of the most vulnerable times in their lives. In the early years at the cemetery, I questioned God about his choice for my career. I told him I could be a dentist, a builder, or even a landscaper. But are you serious God, work at a cemetery? Over time I began to see how important it was for someone like me, who loves every human being, to be here to help families when they lose a loved one. Please believe me when I say that I sincerely pledge the following to you:
I will care for you and your loved ones for as long as I shall live.
The family member you have entrusted in our care will be treated with the utmost respect.
You and your loved one are part of our family here at The Gardens.
We love you and will be here for you.
We will continue to pray for God's Mercy and Blessings as you grieve.
We will assist you in any way we can with the transition to building a healthy way of life after your loss.
Alan J. MacKinnon, CCE
Eunice A. Davis, Family Services
Eunice has received a certificate of achievement from the New England Cemetery Association in Cemetery Management. She also completed intense training through In-Sight Institute Certified Celebrants: Life Tribute Professionals to become a Funeral Celebrant.
To learn about the value of celebrating your life and remembering the lives of your loved ones, please schedule a more formal visit with Eunice Davis. (Saturdays and Sundays can be arranged). Please contact us directly at 617-325-0186.