Of the famous or relatives of the famous buried in the Sterling Community Cemetery there are:
n James Mathews, nephew of the great English actor C. Mathews
A number of Civil War officers and doctors including:
n Nathan H. Ray, who at thirteen years of age was a drummer boy in the Civil War
n Frank Shelby Blades, one of General Custers men
n Warren Pierce Morrison, whose paternal grandmother was a sister of Robert E. Lee
n Samuel Harvey Kurnes, a Buffalo soldier
nChildren of George Avery, Jr., founder of Avery farm equipment
n Mattie E. (Sharpe) Hadlock, the first woman in the town of Peace
n Genie Stubbs, the first cemetery burial (1873) in the town of Peace
n Jan Walker, mother of Demira Azula (Walker) Fair (the first burial, 1876, after the cemetery became known as Cottonwood Park Cemetery)
n John S. Rider, a riverboat captain on the Ohio River
n Children who were part of the Orphan train and couples who adopted them
n Women whose husbands went to California in the Gold Rush and were never heard from again
n Parents of Charles August Babize, French press agent for Dr. Charles Sheldon, author of What Would Jesus Do?
n Arthur Dyche, son of Lewis Lindsay Dyche, for whom Kansas University's Dyche Museum was named
n Kenneth Porter, noted Kansas poet and writer
n William Arthur Bright, world champion Bantam-weight boxer
n Hester (Gilpin) Carr, a first cousin of the movie star and bathing beauty, Esther Williams
n John S. Dillon, founder of the Dillon Grocery stores (the first of which was in Sterling)
n Dr. Francis Marion Spencer, first president of Cooper (Sterling) College
n Norman Eugene Small and Phil David Johnson, Rice County's 1st and 2nd Vietnam casualties.
Each family has heroes. Although the grave marker might give only brief facts, behind each marker is a life story to be passed on to future generations.