Thursday, May 8, 2014

Add value by resetting memorials

Patrick Lewis,
Grounds Manager,
Sunset Memorial Park
Spring is here and with that comes a lot of clean-up work from the winter weather in our memorial park. One of our biggest jobs in the spring is to raise the ground memorials that have sunk over the winter.

The ground breathes, rising and falling. During the winter, especially with extreme weather, the swelling and compressing of the ground can cause memorials - even on granite - to sink.

Our grounds crew carefully raises the memorials without damaging the bronze or granite. We use a marker raiser - a slow moving machine much like a scissor lift with forks. We have to make sure not to hit the granite or bronze when raising and lowering the fork prongs, because they can compromise the clear coat or cause damage. Once the memorial is moved, we dig out the vase well, prepare the space and reset the memorial.

Ideally, the top of the granite is level with the ground. This helps avoid damaging the memorial during mowing and trimming while keeping the ground level.

Next time you are walking around your cemetery grounds, make sure to keep an eye on the memorials affected by the winter weather. By taking the extra time to reset memorials, you are providing value to the families you serve and keeping their loved one's memorial in good condition as a special place to share memories.

This article originally appeared in Modern Memorialization, Trigard Memorials' weekly electronic newsletter featuring information for the funeral industry. Sign up for your free subscription at

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