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Front Page » April 22, 2008 » Local News » Work continues on Lawrence cemetery project
Published 3,230 days ago

Work continues on Lawrence cemetery project

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Volunteers mark the unknown graves at Lawrence Cemetery.

The Lawrence Cemetery is seeing some improvements. Fausett Mortuary donated some markers to be placed at the unknown grave sites and these were recently installed by volunteers and members of the Lawrence Cemetery Improvement Committee.

A scout project was also held which helped install a kiosk which denotes where all the graves are located and identifies who is buried in which lot. It also shows the vacant lots which can be sold for use in the future. Cole Guymon was in charge of the Eagle Project on the kiosk.

The cemetery committee has been meeting for several years and the management plan was recently approved by the Emery County Commis sion. The Lawrence Cemetery is the only cemetery owned by the county.

One of the improvements was the delineation of the roadway around the cemetery. Large boulders have been placed to mark where visitors to the cemetery should drive. Sam Diamond was also involved on this clean-up day and he gathered trash bags full of garbage that blew into the cemetery. A large dumpster has been placed at the cemetery for garbage collection during the busy clean-up season and for Memorial Day visitors.

The new kiosk contains the information on the burial lots within the Lawrence Cemetery.

The management plan outlines the responsibilities of Emery County in regards to the cemetery. The county shall oversee cemetery maintenance and beautification and shall maintain the road and any snow removal for funerals. The county will establish a fee schedule for the opening and closing of graves and for the purchase of lots. After lot fees have been paid the clerk/auditor's office will issue a certificate of burial rights which describes the lot purchased.

It's been a practice at the Lawrence cemetery for individual plots or family plots to be fenced. No more of these small enclosures will be allowed within the cemetery and if any of them need to be removed due to opening of graves or other activity they will not be replaced.

Bevan Wilson spoke at a recent commission meeting concerning the cemetery. He said the committee for the cemetery was created by the county commission and members of the historical society and people with relatives in the cemetery were selected to be a part of the committee. Their first meeting was on March 22, 2004. With the goals and objectives they had in mind they came up with the management plan. This plan identifies someone to be responsible for the operation and upkeep of the cemetery and to direct the affairs of the cemetery.

The committee researched several rural cemeteries to see how they were operated and came up with the management plan for Lawrence. They have held several meetings and formed several drafts and came up with the document they presented to the commission. Wilson said they have been involved with identifying the unmarked graves as well as getting the map prepared which outlines where everyone is buried. "A lot of time and effort has been put into this document by the committee and the commissioners. In 2005 a Veteran's Memorial was placed in the Lawrence Cemetery through the efforts of the American Legion. The flag pole was painted last year. Thanks to those commitee members for their dedicated service to the cemetery. If we need to acquire additional land then I hope funds will be available," said Wilson.

Wilson said the cemetery has no perpetual care fund and that's how they want it to remain. They don't want grass, but want the cemetery to remain in its natural state. They are considering placing shade trees around the cemetery. Wilson said he would like to see a portion of lot fees set aside for improvements.

Cleveland scouts help with the fabrication of the new kiosk for the Lawrence Cemetery at Guymon's Machinery Shop in Cleveland.

Commissioner Jeff Horrocks said he would like to see the Lawrence Cemetery Management plan remain fluid so it can be added to as certain things arise in the future. He appreciates the amount of time and work going into the plan.

The commission is also looking at a caretaker for the cemetery. Wilson said it doesn't need to be an elaborate position, but someone needs to be available as things come up in dealing with cemetery issues. Commissioner Gary Kofford, said it could be someone who is already a county employee and additional duties may be added to their present job. The commission recommended $150 for a lot and $300 for the opening and closing of a grave.

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