In memory of those who have given their life as the ultimate sacrifice for our country, we honor their spirit with a dedicated hive. NewBEEs and mentors in the Hives for Heroes network maintain the Memorial Apiary as a living memorial of those who passed.
This is a tradition we started as an extension of “telling the bees”. We'd like to keep the spirit of our fallen brothers and sisters alive and living through the bees.
The practice of telling the bees may have its origins in Celtic mythology which believed that bees were the link between our world and the spirit world. If you had any message that you wished to pass to someone who had passed, you would tell the bees and they would pass along the message. Telling the bees was widely reported from all around England, and also from many places across Europe. Eventually, the tradition made its way across the Atlantic and into North America.⠀
Marriages, new births and especially deaths were marked by decorating the hive and telling the bees what had happened. The death of the beekeeper required the new beekeeper to introduce themselves formally as their new owner and ask for their acceptance as their new beekeeper. It was said that not doing this would encourage the bees to desert the hive or the colony to stop producing honey or even die. ⠀
Through the bees, the spirit of the fallen can live on as the bees produce and pollinate. If you are interested in donating or supporting our Memorial Hive Apiaries, please check out our Giving page.
Below is an example the plaque designed for our fallen heroes.