April 12, 2024

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When you walk through the paths of a cemetery, what do you see? You likely see grave markers filled with names, some perhaps you know, others strangers. You see granite and marble mausoleums and columbariums. Some are dedicated to entire families, others to individuals, and others still hold the remains of communities of people who have existed throughout time.

You likely see natural beauty and beauty left behind by loved ones. Flowers and flowering trees line the paths, as do bouquets from people paying their respects to the people they’ve loved. People themselves may be wandering around the paths, holding the hands of their children while they tell stories of the grandparents they’re coming to visit. Or perhaps you spot a couple telling each other tales from a lifetime of memories as they visit the resting place of friends from decades past.

Stories echo throughout a cemetery, some spoken aloud and others simply entwined in the words etched in the stone markers that dot the tranquil grounds. Those stories are what make a cemetery so timeless. Cemeteries exist in a space that seems outside of time. When you’re here, visiting the people you’ve loved throughout your life, you’re stepping back in time as you wander through those stories and memories.

When you decide for your final resting place to be a cemetery, whether in a grave, a mausoleum, or a columbarium, you’re giving the people you love the gift of those stories. In just one lifetime, you affect so many others. Choosing to create a place of memorialization means giving those people who have loved you a place to find you, a place where their memories can dance through the peaceful paths, and a place where they can always feel you’re close by.

Cemeteries serve so many purposes and mean something different for everyone. For some, cemeteries are where someone can quietly contemplate, feeling the breeze on their skin and the grass beneath them as they feel at one with everything around them. For others, cemeteries are a gathering place where loved ones can stand hand in hand, feeling those they’ve all loved around them as they share memories and emotions.

On the peaceful grounds of a cemetery, you can connect with community. While your loved one came to a cemetery to find you, they can leave having found people who understand their struggle, knowing that they never have to grieve alone as even strangers aren’t so strange when you realize that the struggle of grief is a profoundly human experience, connecting us all.

A grave marker isn’t just a grave marker. It’s a beacon, guiding the people you’ve loved to you. It’s a memorial that brings people together, connects us all, and shares stories that make us all feel more human and less alone.


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