The Rosemont Memorial Garden
The Rosemont Cemetery Association is committed to providing quality end of life choices to meet the needs of all in the community it serves while enhancing the Cemetery’s natural beauty and heritage. As such, in addition to providing traditional burial spaces, on Earth Day 2017, the Cemetery unveiled its newest section, the Rosemont Memorial Garden and Natural Burial Area. This opening represents the culmination of years of work to create a meaningful, well-thought out area where those wishing to lessen the environmental impact of burial can choose to rest.
Lowering ones environmental impact
Green burial, also known as “natural burial”, is a method of burial that focuses on naturally returning the body to the earth, while making as little negative impact on the ground and water supply as possible. This process allows the body to recycle naturally, without chemicals being introduced into the body that inhibit decomposition. The body, when buried, is encased in biodegradable materials, such as an all-wood casket, bamboo basket or shroud and no concrete vault is used. The goal of green burial is to provide a burial alternative that furthers the goals of conservation of natural resources, reduces carbon emissions and restores and/or preserves the natural landscape and native habitat.
Green burial is not a new concept. The practice of embalming the deceased began during the Civil War when it became necessary to keep a fallen soldier’s body intact over a period of several days in order that they could be moved by train back home to their loved ones. Prior to this, embalming was not used. In fact, the new movement to “go green” with burials is actually a move toward a more traditional method of burial, one that has been used in practice for hundreds of years and was used in our oldest burial sections.
Much thought was put into the design of the Rosemont Memorial Garden and Natural Burial Area, which sits at the bottom of the hill, bordered on one side by beautiful woodlands and on another side by a farm field. The concept of this burial area is to provide a peaceful place for loved ones to visit and that is inviting to the community; to those that have loved ones buried here, as well as to those that simply want to find a space of peaceful quite reflection. The graves in the Memorial Garden are laid out in a series of concentric circles, with the circles representing the circle of life and the community that surrounds the Cemetery. This design concept represents a paradigm shift from the traditional rectangular grave layouts to a more natural layout.
Joining the two spaces
Equally important to the Association was creating a space that seamlessly blended with the rest of the Cemetery, and joined our very oldest sections at the very top of the cemetery to the newest section at the bottom, both of which are represented by natural burial. The esthetic nature of the garden and woodland surroundings and the natural hewn bench were intended to engage visitors in quiet reflection. The rock that forms the focal point of the garden, and which was unearthed while excavating this section, is intended to represent the permanence and strength of life.
It is our hope that all who visit the Rosemont Memorial Garden are left with a sense of peace and an awareness of the beauty that surrounds them daily in nature.