Monday, May 24, 2010

The Heartfelt - Graveyard Rabbits Carnival, June 2010

Vedder View Gardens Cemetery, Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada

The topic for the June 2010 edition of the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival is: The Interesting, The Odd, The Beautiful. This topic was submitted by Gail Wall, who authors the blog, Digital Cemetery Walk.

One of the more unusual cemetery headstones I've seen in British Columbia, Canada is this very individual one which is in Vedder View Gardens Cemetery, a family owned cemetery in a beautiful setting in Chilliwack, BC.

With Memories in our Minds and Love in our Hearts.
Jason Michael FRAESS memorial, born 7 August, 1980; died 24 October, 1998. Vedder View Gardens Cemetery, Chilliwack, BC , Canada.


"My Prayer" handwritten on the back of the FRAESS memorial.

At the time these photographs were taken, in 2006, there were a couple of other very personal memorials at this cemetery, and, as you can see, many graves with more traditional markers had been decorated with various tokens and momentos, as well as flowers and plants.

This memorial, however, stood out.

The love that went into this marker was impossible to miss.

Recently I attended a seminar on 'The Final Disposition' at Mountain View Cemetery in Vancouver. Some of the discussion there centred on how families might mark the graves and the deaths of loved ones in more meaningful ways in the future.

Although it may not weather as well as a commercial one, and may mean the cemetery has to adapt its landscaping practice, this heartfelt, handmade memorial certainly shows a family commemorating a death in a cemetery in a very personal manner.

Now there are less tangible options too - on-line memorials which might even last much longer than a tombstone. And indeed there are now two digital memorials for Jason Fraess - one on a Facebook page with photographs and one at Making Everlasting Memories with photographs and many memories.

Many families I know are now participating in these kinds of on-line memorials. Cemeteries are often firm on their standards for permanent memorials. Could gravestones become almost a 'thing of the past' or might we see a trend towards more personal, artistic memorials in local cemeteries?

Note: The Abbotsford Genealogical Society has a listing of the burials at this cemetery on-line. (These are not listed in the British Columbia Cemetery Finding Aid.) Unfortunately, perhaps due to the condition of the writing on the memorial now, the dates on the Abbotsford listing are currently incorrect. These photographs were taken by M. Diane Rogers in July of 2006.

This post was written for the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival. To learn more about the Association of Graveyard Rabbits, please have a look at the Association's website.

1 comment:

Carole said...

Hi Diane - Great "Heartfelt" post.

Also, I just wanted to let you know that I have passed the "Ancestor Approved Award" to you. You can pick it up at my site -
Then pass it on to 10 more worthy genealogy blogs.
Thanks, Carole also from British Columbia.