Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Tombstone Tuesday: Mistakes happen

Today is the anniversary of the death of my great-grandmother, Emily Jane McDONALD (nee COOK).  She died in 1951 at the age of 83.

I never knew her.  Apparently she was quite small and quite the martinet.  This photo was taken after the family's arrival in Australia.

The McDonald Family c1920
(L-R) John Edwin McDonald; Emily Jane McDonald (nee Cook); Alan Mcdonald; Kathleen McDonald
Personal property of the author.
As I said, she died on 5 January 1951 and was buried in the Bundaberg Cemetery on the same day.  

So far, so good.

Over the next 40 years, her husband, her son, her daughter, her son-in-law and the brother of her son-in-law were all buried in the same plot.  It was then that things went awry.

Her only remaining grand-daughter - my mum! - thought it was about time that a proper headstone was prepared for the family. She arranged for a new grave covering and headstone.  And it looks fantastic!

Plot A Grave #P2664 Bundaberg Cemetery
McDonald/de Friez
Unfortunately, 3 of the 6 recorded dates on the headstone are incorrect!  Three of them!!  This is the headstone as it now looks.

The correct dates of death for the McDonald family are:
  • John 21 June 1956
  • Emily 5 January 1951
  • Alan 4 March 1976
And the correct dates of death for the de Friez family are:
  • Kathleen 14 May 1976
  • Alexander 6 September 1992
  • Charles 14 July 1993
It seems now that my only course of action is to have this remedied.  I feel responsible for fixing this up, and somehow guilty that my ancestors are not being portrayed correctly.  So a savings plan has been started, and I hope to be able to replace this headstone before the end of this year.  Another goal to add to the list :-)

Sleep well, great-grandmother; you are in my thoughts.

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