Friday, October 3, 2014

Tree Shaped Tombstones - Does Not Compute !

We were in the homestretch of a road trip to Iowa.  It was getting a little dusky and I was on a road I had never taken before.  We were winding up a beautiful little river valley when we went by a small cemetery.  Out of the corner of my eye I spotted something that seemed....odd.

Executing a slightly reckless turn around on a road with no shoulders I went back and encountered this enigma.

It is an honest to goodness tree shaped tombstone.  From March of this year.

We were in a rural area north of Alma Wisconsin.  The closest community is a little placed named Cream, with four houses and a tavern.  I looked up John Kuri's obituary trying to solve the mystery of how a man in the 21st century is buried under a monument type that has not been made commercially for about a century.  I found no clues, but John Kuri does appear to have been a pretty swell guy.

A while back I had an email from a woman wondering where she could get a monument of this type. Her husband had died of cancer and had really liked this style of grave marker.  Alas, I was not able to offer much help, just the email of a sculptor in Illinois who had replicated one recently at a very high price.  The difference one supposes between an artist and an artisan.

But John Kuri found a way.  I assume that in the back shed of some monument company, untouched since about 1910 there was an unused tree shaped monument.  Well done sir.  Well done, indeed.

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