Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), Miracle of the Concrete Jesus & Other Stories, and several Kindle ebooks.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Rest in Peace? No Way!

Sometime between Saturday morning and this morning my tombstone went missing from the family cemetery on Standiford Road in Union Hall.

I don’t think it left of its own accord, so it’s not wandering around loose or anything. From tracks that the investigating officer found, it appears that someone hauled it out of the cemetery on a cart.

I bought that tombstone in 2005 when Rhonda was running a special down at Add-A-Touch Monuments. I’d looked through a whole bunch of designs before I selected the grape-leaf design, which I thought look kind of festive. It was delivered on December 14, the same day I bought Maggie.

Why did I buy my own tombstone? A couple of reasons. For one, I was being harassed by some of the local rednecks and didn’t know whether I’d survive the 2005 hunting season. (The harassment increases during deer season when they roam in mobs and carry guns. Update: I've blogged many times in the past about the harassment, but a summary is here. ) Second, I don’t have kids. Who would pick out a stone for me when I’m gone? (John has lousy taste.) Third, I wanted to mark my place in the family cemetery. Finally, it was on special—I saved 5%.

Here’s what it looked like before this weekend:

Here’s what it looks like now:

The thieves even took the pillar it was on!

Anyhow, if you happen to see my missing tombstone, give me a call. I’m offering a reward for its safe return and another reward for information leading to the conviction of whoever took it.

I won’t rest in peace until it's returned.

Update: Interestingly, my tombstone went missing a week after I'd filed charges against a local boy who'd barely missed hitting my truck head-on while he was speeding his ATV on a public road. We'd been harassed by this kid and his father (see "Tribulations and the Trial") on many previous occasions.

Before long, a couple of blogs appeared denouncing me. The same day the stone went missing, this one appeared. Two days later, the same person posted another blog. His brother, who was in the landscaping/hardscaping business, hi-jacked an Internet radio show I was on a week later and then started his own blog.

A post about the radio show is "What the World Knows Now" posted on November 15, 2007. Another tombstone related post is "A Little Help from my Friends" on November 16, 2007.

A few years later, I bought a replacement tombstone. The original was never returned. Roanoke Times Columnist Dan 

Casey wrote a story about it: "Now She Can Rest in Peace."




Blogger Marion said...

They took your TOMBstone? How weird are these guys, anyway! Did it disappear before Halloween and show up somewhere in downtown Novelty?

I've heard of folks stealing gnomes, then taking pictures of them in, say, Rome. Or Hawaii.

But gnomes weigh lots less than an actual tombstone. Smuggling a tombstone onto an airplane couldn't be easy...

4:10 PM  
Blogger Amy Hanek said...

Ahhhh... just when you didn't think anyone would stoop so low, someone stooped down to steal your tombstone!

I am glad you are still punny during such a terrible time. R.I.P. - if you can!

1:31 PM  
Blogger Debi said...

Now that's really trashy, stealing someone's tombstone.

11:35 PM  
Blogger Susan Coryell said...

I think it's safe to say no ghost removed the marker, right? Might make an interesting plot, however (pun intended)!

11:21 AM  

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