Burial

Mary's ashes have been buried at Conejo Mountain Cemetery in Camarillo.

The grave is located in the Palm's Nature Garden, and is #139 A and B. The grave accommodates two cylinders of ashes. Hers is on the left side (the A side) and mine is on the right (the B side). When we traveled and stayed at a hotel, she always placed her towel on the left of a towel rack or sink and I on the right, because "I am always right." Since that gimmick enabled us to keep the location of our towels straight, we thought during an earlier visit to the cemetery it would be effective in selecting sides here as well, although we had no idea we'd be needing to use it so soon.

Our grave is shown elevated -- Mary's ashes are in the left half
Our grave is shown elevated — Mary's ashes are in the left half

At the service, family members wore boutonnieres. Before the service began, we were invited to come forward if we wished to pay our final respects to Mary. One person removed his boutonierre and placed it along the edge of the gravestone. Soon others followed, each extending the line created by the previous boutonnieres already in place. Among the last to walk up was 97-year old Jerry Burke, Mary's dad. For him, this was the third funeral for his five children. After his second child had died, he had buried his wife of 69 years, Mary, in 2011, and that loss continues to pain him every single day. As Jerry walked up, he became very unsteady. Someone quickly grabbed his arm to ensure he didn’t fall. He leaned over slowly and put his boutonniere in place as well, and his body continued shaking with grief.

Boutonnieres of family members border the gravestone
Boutonnieres of family members border the gravestone

Our gravestone will be engraved within the next couple months. When that has been done, I will post a photo of the engraved stone here.

Deacon Dave Smith conducted the burial service with close family and friends present.

Deacon Dave awaits arrivals before beginning the service
Deacon Dave awaits arrivals before beginning the service