Low cost grave marker

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by designer, Oct 9, 2004.

  1. designer

    designer Well-Known Member

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    My son, Justin, 21 lost his son, Logan, yesterday, just two weeks before his due date. It was placeta separation and an emergency c-section did not save him. We are all heart broken. It is so hard on him. It is so hard to think straight. They have very little money. We're providing the burial place but can't do more. The funeral home is donating their services and a casket. They have to come up with $200 to pay the grave digger. We hope her parents will help with that. But we have been thinking of what to do for a grave marker. I've been checking online and the small flat ones are almost $400. They can't afford that. I've seen those small metal things on a post that just have the name and date on it. But I can't find anything like that. If you have any suggestions please offer them.
     
  2. mistletoad

    mistletoad Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What an awful thing to go through, my thoughts are with you and yours. I believe the metal gravemarkers come from the funeral homes - all that I have seen have the name of the home on them. Another low-cost but rather nice idea I have seen in poured cement. It looks nicer than it sounds and the first one I saw was for a family member killed in the civil war, so they hold up well. You would make it like the stepping stones they sell kits for and write the words with a stick as the cemet is setting.
     

  3. Shrek

    Shrek Singletree Moderator Staff Member

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    What about an engraved metal plaque like what they make for doors? Our local office supply engraves them for about $30. They are about 4 by 10 inches. Then it could be set in a sackrete base. The entire marker can be made for less than $50. Being an infants grave the marker should be small. You could also set an angel or teddybear figurine into the concrete if you choose. If theres concern of vandalism while theconcrete sets, it could be made at home in a form to dry.

    Another alternative would be to purchase a brick capstone and drill it to mount the plaque on it.
     
  4. Meg Z

    Meg Z winding down

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    I'm sorry for your loss. Losing a child is hard. Standing by while your child loses a child, and not be able to 'make it all better' must be dreadfull. My thoughts will be with you.

    Mistletoad's idea is a good one. You can buy or make a mold, and the cement can be colored. Items can be imbedded if one chooses...and bears in mind how the items will weather. All in all, though, a very creative, original marker can be done, with input from everyone in the family. And something made gives each person who works on it a way to help deal with the grief.

    Meg
     
  5. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    My sincerest condolences to you and your family.

    We sorta went through the same thing, although we would have been able to afford the normal route, we chose to deal with the death of our son as we had dealt with everything else...at home.

    Ian was born, cherished, loved and buried at home.

    I asked a woodworking friend to build us a tiny coffin and I dug the grave myself, finding some bit of solace in the sweat and the tears. My wife and two young children helped to cover the grave, which we marked with stones arranged in a heart shape, and pebble messages inside.

    Of course, the stones became disarranged over time, and we would straigten them back out. Every visit we would leave a new message, written in pebbles.

    Later that year, I somehow muscled a huge granite boulder on my poor squating pickup and brought it home, with the intention of engraving it by hand. It still sits out next to the shed awaiting it's destiny. All these years, we have preferred the changing pebble messages that we leave on our visits.

    If you have or wish to arrange a pay-pal account, I would be happy to make a small donation in Logan's memory.
     
  6. coalroadcabin

    coalroadcabin Well-Known Member

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    So sorry for your loss. Just a thought, but unless the cemetary requires it, you really don't have to have a permanent marker right away. You may want to put the marker up sometime later when finances are easier and when you have had time to grieve - it's really, really hard to make decisions when you are grieving. Sometimes its best to let somethings wait until you are ready to deal with them.
     
  7. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

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    I'm so sorry for your loss.

    When my brother died we had no money for a marker. I took a nice piece of sandstone (as large as I was able to lift) and carved his name and the dates with a dremel tool. We set it in a 2x2 square of concrete that we (mom and I) poured over the spot where we buried his urn. I dug the hole for the urn myself, next to mom's great grandfather's site. Later moms ashes were buried next to Jim as she requested.
     
  8. DrippingSprings

    DrippingSprings In Remembrance

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    I am very sorry for your loss. I once made a marker for some friends baby pretty much in the same situation. If the graveyard allows anything other than the flat, flush with the ground type then you can take a 4x4 and make a really nice cross out of it. You can bevil the ends to be pointed. Then for just a few dollars and probably even free a local place can engrave you a really nice plate with name etc and some scroll work and or things like rattlers etc. Also you might check to see if theres a law as to who can dig your grave. My family has always hand dug the graves and covered ourselves as well. If this is possible the 200 can go towards a marker. Check with a local stone service they may allow you something with payments as an option. Aound here it is not uncommon for graves to be stone free for up to a year while the family gets the stone. Please know that me and my family will have all of you in our prayers.
     
  9. deb

    deb Well-Known Member

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    I am sorry for your loss.

    I work for a company that designs & builds medical facilities and I used to order metal letters and cast plaques for our buildings. My company's been in business 50+ years and has always used was Metal Arts in North Dakota. Here is their website:

    http://www.metalartslettersandplaques.com/index.html

    The quality of their work is great and I NEVER had any problems with the orders I placed. The plaques are all custom, but they do have a stock some fonts of metal letters.


    If that option is too pricey or too long, then look in the local phone book for places that engrave in metal - sign shops and award stores. You could pick one of their plain metal plaques, have it engraved with your wording and then mount it to whatever you like - a wooden bench, a lovely rock, etc.

    best wishes
    deb
    in wi
     
  10. breezynosacek

    breezynosacek Well-Known Member

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    I hoping this doesn't sound dorky but I think it is what I would do for hubby if he died anytime soon.

    There are kits called garden markers. They are garden stones that you custom pour and choose the size of. They have letters in the kits that you use to make words on the stones. You can also add fancy glass and ceramics so you could do a little cross or some such. Maybe do a flower or butterfly or rainbow or something.

    You can color the concrete anyway you want, but it is at least permanent, and less costly. If you made it with a hole you could fit a small vase in it for flowers.

    Ben Franklin carried them, I don't know if they will have them this late in the year but they might.

    I also remember that one or two of my seed catalogs had the kits in there.
     
  11. WolfWalksSoftly

    WolfWalksSoftly Level II -Inappropriate

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    I'm sorry for your loss. The majority of funeral homes will provide a temporary marker at no cost.
    Scott
     
  12. gerae

    gerae Member

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    I am so sorry to hear about your families loss. You might try contacting the MISS Foundation (Mothers In Sympathy and Support) as they are sometimes able to help with the financial burdens of the sudden costs of funerals, head stones, etc.: http://www.missfoundation.org

    I would definitely ask about a temporary marker; most cemeteries provide them at no cost. We could not afford to have a headstone for our daughter until 3 years after she died (also from a placental abruption). There is no time limit.

    Gerae
     
  13. tammy from wv

    tammy from wv Well-Known Member

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    My mother had a brother who died many, many years ago whose grave was not marked. My mom decided that it was her mission to get his grave marked after all those years (probably 70). At their family reunion 2 years ago they took up a collection from the family members. She went to a monument dealer, told him how much they had to spend and what they suggested doing was this. They had a flat grave marker that another family had ordered but didn't like so they didn't take it. The monument company turned it over and engraved my uncles information on the other side. Of course then it was installed with the other side down so noone was any wiser. They gave them a great deal on it, and it looks very nice. So maybe this could be an option to look into.
     
  14. Gayle in KY

    Gayle in KY Gadabout

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    Another option, if you know someone who works in a local factory, in metal fabrication, and uses a lazer, you might be able to have one cut out of stainless to your specifications (you'll probably need to contact the office and ask them about it). My husband does this for people who want signs for their farms. They can be painted with powder paint, too (mine is).
     
  15. sidepasser

    sidepasser Well-Known Member

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    HI,

    So sorry to hear of your family's loss, I hope this idea may work for you.

    I have a cemetary that I bought with the farm. There are graves that go back over 200 years and you can still see the engravings on the markers. The infants' markers are made of a piece of granite that is 12 inches (approx.) wide by 16 inches long. The granite slabs are about 3 inches thick and have chiseled on the baby's name, mom and dad's name, date of birth/death, and usually an angel. Very simply done, but yet so long lasting. If you could apply the same idea to regular concrete, you could build a form using 2' x 4's making it the shape and size you wanted, then pour the concrete, using a trowel or scree board to smooth it into all the corners. Let it set up but not get so hard that you can't write in it. You can add color to concrete as well and perhaps put an impression of something like an angel in the corner. Write the information you think is important on before the concrete completely hardens. Then let set until completely dry.

    This is the least expensive way I can think of to have a stone type marker, I also think the metal engraving idea is good, and you could set that in concrete as well. First I would go to the local monument company and explain the situation and see if they wouldn't possibly be able to help you with an odd piece of marble or granite that someone else ordered but decided not to take, maybe it's too small or not quite the right shape but in otherwise good shape and would be small enough for a baby's marker.

    Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers,
    Sidepasser
     
  16. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    I'm so sorry for your loss !! Me and the Wife have been looking into one for our Granddaughter,who passed away a year ago.Cheapest we can find is $600.Our Daughter wants one for $1,500.Can't change her mind.I'm about ready to get the cheaper one,whether she approves or not,and go on.

    The place we are looking will let us make payments.

    big rockpile
     
  17. fin29

    fin29 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hear about your loss.

    I found this site for you. I would be happy to make a donation to your family if you are still unable to afford one of these. PM me.

    Grave Markers

    Best,
    fin
     
  18. designer

    designer Well-Known Member

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    Thank you all for the ideas and well wishes. We made it throught the funeral today. It was a graveside service. He was buried here on the farm. My in-laws had allready gotten the paperwork from the county to make a family plot, we just had to use it allot sooner then we expected. I had thought we would have to have the marker before the service, now that I know we have more time we can relax alittle and figure something out. My son wants something with a vase for flowers. We think we can do a concrete form and embed a metal plate and make an empression of a vase bottom so one can be used. It will be nice to make something ourselves. That will make it realy special.
     
  19. herefordman

    herefordman Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hear of your loss.
    A concrete box can be made to use as a form, and if you use plastercene or wood and make the lettering reversed in the bottom of the form, when you pour the concrete very thin it will flow over the lettering and will be deeply engraved when you remove it from the form.
    Add coloring or tiles or crushed colored glass to the concrete and then polish it down, it can look very nice.
     
  20. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

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    You may want to check with any local companies that deal in granite or marble - kitchen remodelers, etc. A brother of mine is a stone cutter and the size of the pieces of stone that his shop calls "waste" is amazing. It may not be too difficult to find a piece of granite or marble 24", 36" or larger (that would possibly cost upwards of $10-15 per square foot retail) literally for free at a local shop. If it was explained what it was to be used for there is always the possibility that labor to cut the stone to size as use for a plaque mounting or engraving could be donated as well.