Film Freaks Launch Effort To Save “Living Dead” Cemetery Chapel.

Horror buff Gary Streiner (Photo by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Here’s a cool story from my own state of Pennsylvania about an effort to save a cemetery chapel that featured in George Romero’s legendary 1968 zombie flick “Night of the Living Dead.”

It’s spearheaded by a guy named Gary Streiner, who was just 17 when he lent a hand on the cult classic. He’s got a year to raise the $50,000 it’ll take to save the decaying chapel in the Evans City Cemetery in Butler County, which is all the way out near the Ohio state line in southwestern Pennsylvania.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, here’s the key part of the story:

“The effort has drawn nearly 2,000 people to a Facebook page, where they share and execute fundraising projects including T-shirt and poster sales, customized zombie portraits and sales of pieces of the decaying chapel roof. About two months into the campaign, they’ve raised nearly $7,000.

“People just want to be a part of this,” said Mr. Streiner. “It’s cinematic history.”

Ron Volz, president of the cemetery association, said board members wish Mr. Streiner luck but said that if the effort falls short they will have no choice but to tear down the chapel. He acknowledged its iconic cinematic status, noting the chapel is the last remaining building featured in the zombie classic.

“We have people in town who want to keep it, but we need the money to restore it. He’s come up with great ideas to raise money but 50 grand is going to be tough to raise, I think,” Mr. Volz said. “But if he gets zombies from all over the United States to contribute … he can raise it. It will be a great improvement over what’s standing there now.”

Read the full story here.

About jlmicek

I'm an award-winning journalist in Harrisburg, Pa. I also run and cook all the things.
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