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San Antonio, Texas

Chris Park

A mother's mourning for her lost son is remembered in this small park embedded with his memory. 

Every inch of the one acre Chris Park in downtown San Antonio is dedicated by a mother to her lost son.

Chris Goldsbury died of a drug overdose in 1997 at the age of 24. His mother Linda Pace, of the Pace Picante Sauce family and the Linda Pace Foundation which has a gallery in the park, commissioned Chris Park as a public tribute to his life. Built in 2005, the small park mixes places of contemplation, play, and repose. A fountain bursts out of the concrete at the entrance, while a tumble hill is covered with inviting green grass around a path lined with lush plants.

Art installations by Teresita Fernandez imbue the memory of Chris in surprising spaces. Quarried stone benches are etched with lines from his journal in his handwriting, like “I hugged a friend” and “I watched a cat sleep on my chest.” The “Starfield” embedded in the ground has small blue lights representing the constellations that were in the sky on the day of his birth. On colored circles, the “Monday’s Child” nursery rhyme has each day of the week replaced with Wednesday, the day Chris was born (such as “Wednesday’s child is full of grace” and “Wednesday’s child is full of woe”).

Linda Pace herself passed away in 2007. Yet each spring, a Natchez mock orange tree, christened by the broken hearted mother as “Chris’ Tree,” blooms in memory of her mourning.