We ship all kinds of headstones & monuments to any place in United States and Canada!

Design Collections

Stone Angel

Memorial Bench

Memorial Monument

Cemetary Headstones

Monuments Cemetery

Tomb Stone Stone

Stone Cross

Headstones Grave Markers

Stone Etching
Stone Etching
Etching Granite
Etching In Stone
Etching Marble
Etching On Granite
Etching On Stone
Etching Stone
Granite Etching
Gravestone Etching
Headstone Etching
Marble Etching

Grave Markers

Tombstone Gravestone

Monument Photos

Funeral Monument

Tombstone Headstone

Monuments Memorials

Stone Memorial

Memorial Monument

Monument Statue

Headstones Tombstones

Graves Headstones Rendering For Parr Family

Etching Granite

3692-46-Labrador-Granite-Etching Aaliyah-Funeral-Pictures Acton-Funeral-Home-Acton-Ma Akin-Funeral-Home
Upright Photos Of Headstones Sample Online Headstone Design Memorial Pictures Of Gravestones Funeral Tombstones Pictures
Akins-Funeral-Home Anchent-Stone-Etching Anchient-Stone-Etching Ancient-Stone-Etching
Upright Headstones Monuments Unusual Memorials And Headstones Double Headstones Design Uncommon Headstone Monuments
Ardoins-Funeral-Home Artesia-Nm-Funeral-Homes Ashburn-Funeral-Home Bagpipe-Funeral-Dirges
Custom Picture Headstones Garden Memorial Stone Different Grave Headstone Designs Unusual Headstones With Pictures
Banks-And-Beals-Funeral-Home Bannister-Funeral-Home Bedford-Pa-Funeral-Homes Black-Etching-Headstones
Double Stone Headstones Custom-built Stone Grave Markers Customized Gravestone Black-Etching-Headstones
Bliley-S-Funeral-Home Bracketts-Funeral-Home Brainard-Funeral-Home-Wausau Brother-Funeral-Flowers
Exclusive Gravestone Headstones Funeral Grave Stone Custom Gravestone Made-to-order Memorial Grave Markers

How to Write Your Epitaph
By Lindsey Williams

I can't believe Dear Abby has retired from the advice column business. I thought she was immortal.

She and I came aboard the daily Charlotte Sun 13 years ago. She was the most widely syndicated columnist in the country. I was retired from the Journalist Syndicate of Ohio with its 24 clients and writing editorials for the largest county newspaper to taper off a half-century of writing to deadline.

"Abby" was short for Abigail Van Buren, a pen name owned by her syndicate. Pen names are created to carry on a popular column should the star die or - as now - retire. Her real name is Pauline Phillips.

If you insist on knowing, my syndicate didn't create a pen name for me. My logo was "World At Large." Sound somewhat familiar? Good!

I have a soft spot in my heart for Abby. She once complimented me in a letter to a mutual client - the daily Jeffersonian at Cambridge, Ohio:

"While in Columbus, I discovered your jewel of a newspaper. Thank the person who places the Dear Abby column so conspicuously at the top of the page, run in full and with the most current picture.

"Also congratulate Lindsey Williams on his provocative piece on epitaphs. You could give most larger newspapers a few lessons. I appreciate people who earnestly work to put out a really good newspaper. The "Jeff" is one, and I'm proud to be in it."

The Story Abby Liked

When I was a young journalism student, the first class assignment was to write your own obituary.

It was a humbling experience. At that tender age there was little in my life that seemed newsworthy. For a time thereafter I was afraid I might die before I had earned a decent death notice.

Sharing my concern was a fellow student and good friend Johnny Nakamura. He was a Nisei, or second-generation American of Japanese parents.

As a voluntary extension of our obituary exercise, Johnny and I decided to write our own epitaphs. Our objective was a life statement as brief and apt as possible.

With the ego of youth, I came up with:
He Dared Much, Achieved Much.

Johnny chose an epitaph of just two words in a remarkable, rhymed couplet:

I? Why?

Before long, Johnny and I cast our first votes and went off to World War II. I returned home unharmed from the Navy. Johnny was drafted into a Nisei (all Japanese-Americans) battalion and was killed during the landing at Salerno, Italy.

Over the years, I have often thought of the self-epitaphs we composed in our youth. His was too apt, mine too ambitious.

Since then, I have revised my epitaph so that it, also, consists of only two words:

I Tried.

Though I dared less than I intended -- and achieved less than I wanted -- I did my best and am satisfied.

To me, the trying is the important part. In trying, I paid God's rent for my life.

Each person sees his or her role in life differently. Rearing a useful family is primary. Winning fame and fortune is noteworthy. Risking life for the liberty of others is the ultimate contribution.

Whatever our mission, it would be easier to perceive if carved on a rock as a personal memorial to carry with us through eternity.

* * *

It is an ancient custom to summarize the meaning of a person's life with a few well-chosen words that can be inscribed on stone.

The earliest such epitaph was carved at Memphis, Egypt, six thousand years ago. It memorializes the Pharaoh-God Ptah:

He who gives right to him who loves, and gives wrong to him who hates.

That great thought lives today in many variations and is a principal tenet of civilized behavior.

The epitaph reached the height of literary style during the Renaissance. Much thought went into the writing of odes to deceased family members, friends and celebrities.

So important was a good epitaph that famous writers and poets derived considerable income composing them. One of the outstanding epitaphs of this era was written by Robert Burns for his friend William Muir:

If there's another world,

he lives in bliss.

If there is none,

he made the best of this.

Epitaphic literature reached its apex in the last century when personally written - or chosen - messages were popular. A particularly thought provoking self-epitaph is carved into a tombstone at Rittman, Ohio (where I lived at the time):

Remember me as

you pass by.

As I am now,

so you must be.

Prepare for death

and follow me.

Then there arose the flippant, insulting epitaph such as this one:

Beneath these stones do lie,

back to back, my wife and I.

When the last trumpet the air fill,

if she gets up, I will just lie still.

Under the onslaught of such trivia, the epitaph disappeared from the American scene. Grave markers became merely a record of name and the dates of birth and death. Gone are the contributions of epitaphs to the individuality of death - a last opportunity of communication between the dead and the living, the sharing of human experience.

I am told by a manufacturer of grave markers, that there is a revived interest in epitaphs.

Tombstones that incorporate messages in photographically etched metal or laminated plastic are growing in popularity. One company offers a marker that plays a taped, spoken message of the deceased when you push a button on the tombstone.

The plastic and electronic marvels of our age may be ushering in a new emphasis on epitaphs. Yet, I fear they will encourage long-winded dissertations that tend to bury fundamentals under an avalanche of words.

As epitaphs become fashionable once more, I urge they be (l) personally composed and (2) limited to the number of words than can be carved on expensive granite in large letters.

The writing of your own epitaph requires thought about the good and useful things you ought to do to justify an inspiring memorial.

To best live so that we may die honored, we should write our own epitaph early in life, making it as glowing and self-laudatory as we dare.

Thus, we would be obligated to spend the rest of our lives trying to live up to it.


About us  ||  Sitemap  ||  Articles  ||  Terms of Sale  ||  Order Procedure  ||  FAQ  ||  Links



Email: sales@monumentsusa.com

3986 Teakwood Dr, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada L5C 3T5
Tel:  905.615.0613

Email: sales@monumentsusa.com


Memorial, Markers, Memorials, Mausoleum, Monument, Monuments, Headstone, Headstones, Head Stone, Head Stones, Tombstone, Tombstones, Grave Stone, Grave Stones, Gravestone,

Gravestones, Headstone, Memorial_Bench, Grave Markers, Tomb Stone, Tomb Stones, Memorial Headstones, Cemetery, Cemeteries, Grave, Graves, Graveyard, Burial

Copyright @2009 MonumentsUSA.com All rights reserved