God's Song

Psalms in Rhyming Meter

Surprises at the Cemetery

Cemetery Marker n Me

Me at the Seller Family Plot in Grand Lawn Cemetery, Detroit, MI, September 2013

Along the way from initial thought about printing the book, to actual publication, there were many pleasant surprises. For instance, here are three from the Cemetery.

After I discovered both Thomas and Lucile Seller had died, my husband and I decided to visit their gravesites. Cemetery was about 4 hours away from our Michigan home so we combined the trip with our anniversary celebration vacation.

It was our first occasion to see Grand Lawn Cemetery. What a beautiful place. It surprised me that receptionists at the front desk have no computers. They still enter information on forms by hand, telling me that it cuts down on data entry mistakes that might lead to someone being buried in the wrong plot. They were efficient, though, at finding information that pointed us to their graves.

It must have been years since anyone visited the family plot since individual markers set in the ground were overgrown with grass. We found a large granite marker with Seller written on one side and Shulz on the other. That was his wives maiden name. (Yes, “wives” since he married sisters – one in his youth and one at age 79!)

On the Seller side of plot I was surprised to see the site next to Thomas said Henrietta. No wonder I couldn’t find information about his first wife online. Friends of theirs had told me her name was Etta.

Next to Etta was Lucile’s stone. Another surprise. Her birth year of 1909 was inscribed, but there was no date for her year of death. Everyone else in the family plot, Thomas, Etta, Shulz’s, had both dates.

Lucile gravemarker

I asked the office staff why 2002 wasn’t chiseled into her stone. They looked up her file and showed me that she had not ordered it done before her death. Since she was the last surviving family member, maybe she didn’t care that no one knew the date. Or maybe she just wasn’t advised that no one was going to enter the date. It was not listed as an optional item that required extra payment.

After months of research and getting to know the family, I felt privileged to finalize this for Lucile. The office had balked at giving me other information, claiming confidentiality. But they allowed me to purchase the engraving. Somehow it seemed right to take care of what no one else in eleven years had realized was wrong. The Sellers had posthumously become my friends, and I was honored to serve Lucile by ordering the engraving.

 

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