Memorial Panels

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Memorial panels in 2006
AIDS Memorial Quilt Block 2488
James Ozanich and Pam Clasper preparing the panels for shipping after Belles Run, 2019

Note: to find people whose badges are on the panel, see: Memorial Panel Names.

There are Convention traditions intended to comfort those who have lost square dancing friends and family.

The first is a set of Memorial Quilt Panels, which is transported from Convention to Convention. The second is a Memorial Tip in which people are encouraged to use square dancing to remember loved ones.

The IAGSDC® maintains a set of memorial quilt panels, which are displayed at every Convention. This provides both a sense of community history, and a means for our community to honor family and friends who are no longer with us.

Freeman Stamper first envisioned the Memorial Panels in 1994, after conversations with Lynn McCasland, and the first panel appeared that year at the Stars & Squares Forever IAGSDC® convention, held in Washington, DC. Two more panels joined the first, along with special display frames, over the following couple of years. Gene Boemer painted the panels, and George Fox designed and constructed the frames.

As you pass by the quilt, you may see groups of people from different clubs holding memorial services. During these services, they pin onto the quilt the name badges of those members who have died over the past year. (If a dancer's name badge isn’t available, sometimes a new badge will be crafted just to pin onto the quilt.)

There are no rules regarding where a new badge should be pinned. In many cases, especially for the older panels, badges are loosely grouped by clubs. Some dancers have multiple badges, either all in one place or distributed between the various clusters of clubs.

If you hear someone referring to a "quilt" or "pinning" ceremony at Convention, this is probably what they're talking about. In recent years, many clubs have begun holding their pinning ceremonies immediately following their club's group photo, since everyone's in the same place at the same time.

In 2012, thanks to the efforts of Brian Smith and John Mckinstry, a database was created of every name on all three panels. Since then, a notebook is provided near the quilt, which contains a list of all of the names on the panels. James Ozanich currently maintains the panels, notebook and database.

If you pin a badge to the quilt, please write down that person's information in the Quilt Database Notebook. The database book is our community’s “backup copy” in case anything happens to any of the IAGSDC® quilt panels.

Each panel has been divided into four quadrants using a set of ribbons. This is to make it easier to locate a specific badge. For example, an entry in Memorial Panel Names showing a location of " 3UL" means "Panel 3, Upper Left Quadrant." This information should also be recorded in the Quilt Database Notebook.

A fourth panel was added in 2009.

On July 3, 2017, the first high-resolution photos of all four memorial panels were taken by Jorge Paris, to make it possible to locate and view a specific badge online. Subsequently, annual photos have been taken to preserve the History of the Memorial Panels.

ALSO SEE the article by Freeman Stamper: IAGSDC Memorial Panels

Click on the name (E.G., "Memorial Panel 2") under each picture to see a high-res version of each panel.

The names of everyone whose badge(s) are on the panels are listed under Memorial Panel names.

Memorial Panel 1 Memorial Panel 2
Memorial Panel 1 Memorial Panel 2
Memorial Panel 3 Memorial Panel 4
Memorial Panel 3 Memorial Panel 4
Memorial Panel 1 in 1995 Memorial Panel 2 in 1995
Memorial Panel 1 in 1995. Photo courtesy of Seth Feinberg Memorial Panel 2 in 1995. Photo courtesy of Seth Feinberg