Help me choose a (second) gravestone
June 9, 2016 10:11 AM   Subscribe

I need a gravestone for my brother which needs to go in front of my father's headstone (local authority cemetery, Catholic part, uk). Need the hive mind to think about it as I can't right now.

My brother unfortunately died recently and we buried him with my father. My father's headstone looks a bit like this one.

Thing is, I don't want to put his name on my dad's stone as:
1) dad's stone has references to Jesus and scouting, both of which my brother kept his distance from.
2) I want to leave the door open for mum to have her ashes buried there when the time comes, so I want to save the space on dad's stone for her.

What I want is a memorial in front, maybe in the middle of the grave. Something a bit brighter that reflects his personality (photographer, loved to travel). The only thing is it's the Catholic section of the local council cemetery (England) so I need to consider if there's any restrictions which could be a problem.

Can anyone share their experiences on a second gravestone and how what solutions they came up with? And any possible sticking points?
posted by welovelife to Society & Culture (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
One of my cousins, who died (single and childless) after his mother but before his father, has a horizontal plaque in the family gravesite, in front of his parents' traditional vertical gravestone.
posted by Etrigan at 10:15 AM on June 9, 2016 [4 favorites]

You might consider a flat marker.
posted by cooker girl at 10:23 AM on June 9, 2016 [1 favorite]

I think you will want a flat one as it won't obstruct anything. You might be able to have some colourful enamel painted on.
I like the metal ones.

There may be some serious restrictions. You'll have to call whomever manages the graveyard. I suggest you have someone else do it to reduce emotional stress.
posted by FallowKing at 10:33 AM on June 9, 2016

Here in the US, you can add a stone at any time in the future. So if the grief is making this too difficult, maybe you wait a while and get one later? That way you can talk to the cemetery, get some family to weigh in (if you want), etc.
posted by clone boulevard at 10:54 AM on June 9, 2016 [4 favorites]

Also, I am very sorry for your loss. Best wishes to you.
posted by clone boulevard at 10:55 AM on June 9, 2016 [3 favorites]

You have my condolences. Also, two notes based on personal experience. 1) In Judaism, for example, one waits eleven months before putting up a headstone. Please confer with the cemetery, but you should not feel rushed to make this decision at all. 2) My grandparents lived (and died) in a part of Florida which, due to the weather, sees fewer vertical gravestones, per se, and more flat markers. Because they are often metal, instead of stone, they see less wear or shifting, and there'd be no obstruction of headstones in your case. In any case, I've often seen mixing of older vertical gravestones and newer flat markers in the same family area, and it can be aesthetically quite comforting.
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 12:50 PM on June 9, 2016 [1 favorite]

When my wife's mother died she was buried and the headstone didn't get sorted out until at least 6 months after the burial. This was in a catholic cemetery in the UK so I nth the other suggestions to not worry about it now and sort it out later. For further research I would also suggest a flat marker, but be warned that they require more maintenance as they tend to sink and get lost.
posted by koolkat at 7:41 AM on June 10, 2016

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