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Work Starts on Memorial Garden at Former Bever Home Site

Work has begun on a memorial park dedicated to victims of the Bever family murders and first responders to the crime scene.

Broken Arrow Police Cpl. Stephen Garrett was among the first on the scene in July 2015 and is president of Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 190, which donated money toward buying 709 Magnolia Court. Garrett said with Robert and Michael Bever’s trials over, the park will help the community heal.

"We look forward to witnessing the transformation that’s going to occur here, and we like to see something positive come out of such a tragedy," Garrett said.

Broken Arrow Councilman Mike Lester led the fundraising campaign to buy the property after neighbors asked whether the city could do anything to make the house go away. Lester said the garden will also honor the memory of the two Bever sisters who survived the July 2015 attacks by their older brothers.

"While they may never be able to come back to this site again, we hope that when this memorial park/garden is completed, that they may come by some time or see pictures of it and just know that this community cared about them," Lester said.

Park plans call for a small gazebo and a monarch butterfly garden.

The girls were 13 and 2 years old at the time. Lester has also established a trust fund for the girls to use as they need.

"Whether it’s educational opportunities or whether it’s opportunities they might need for just emotional support, you know, they went through a lot so I don’t want to put donations in a box and say, 'This is what you have to use it for,'" Lester said.

Donations to the Bever Girls trust fund can be sent to PO Box 3627, Tulsa, OK 74101-3627.