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Planting a tree in Banská Bystrica, Source: Banská Bystrica

Linden trees commemorate COVID victims in Slovakia

Linden trees commemorate COVID victims in Slovakia

Cities are planting trees as part of a nationwide project titled ‘Living Places of Worship’

On 4 April, the Slovak City of Banská Bystrica announced that it has planted a linden tree at the Central City Cemetery in Kremnička to commemorate the victims of the COVID pandemic. Growing to a height of 30 metres and living to be around 100 years old, the linden tree has not been selected at random.

More specifically, it has been chosen for its unique characteristics as it has heart-shaped leaves and is known for its medicinal properties, which are deemed beneficial for respiratory diseases (such as COVID).

linden treeLinden trees have heart-shaped leaves

A nationwide project

According to a press release, the planting of the tree in Banská Bystrica is part of a nationwide project launched by the Skutočné obete (Real Victims) association. Under the title “Living Places of Worship”, the project seeks to create what it calls “living monuments” in municipalities, towns, and villages all over Slovakia. Commenting on the project, Lenka Straková from Skutočné obete explained:

“Last year, we planted 21 memorial linden trees in 14 places in towns and villages throughout Slovakia and we continue this year. As the pandemic affected each of us personally, it affected our entire territory. There is no city in which families do not live, which today and every day cope with the loss of their loved ones. The tree will not replace their lives, but it will live and breathe symbolically for people who have lost their breath due to COVID and for many years, will be reminiscent of this tragic period.”

Mayor of Banská Bystrica Ján Nosko discussed the living place of worship, sharing that it will serve not only as a memorial but also a symbol of hope for better times. Interested cities and municipalities can register to plant a linden tree as a living monument on the association’s website skutocneobete.sk.

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