Together Even Unto Death

Posted: January 27, 2014 in Uncategorized
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a98582_grave_1-couple-separeted

“A life of leisure and a life of laziness are two things. There will be sleeping enough in the grave.”~Benjamin Franklin

Here’s something for you heart-to-heart readers:

In 1842, a colonel in the Dutch cavalry, JWC van Gorkum, married a woman known as JCPH van Aefferden. The union was controversial — van Gorkum was Protestant and van Aefferden was Catholic.

Despite the prevailing culture at the time, the two remained married for decades, only separating when van Gorkum died in 1880.

He was buried in a cemetery near the Dutch town of Roermond called Begraafplaats Nabij de Kapel in ‘t Zand (“the cemetery near the chapel in ‘t Zand”).

Pillarisation was taken very seriously — each community had its own schools, media, and graveyards — and Begraafplaats was no different.

It took this segregation literally, with each religion having its own section. Van Gorkum was buried in the Protestant section, as would any other Protestant during that era.

But when van Aefferden passed away eight years later, she couldn’t be buried with her late husband; even in death, Catholics needed to stay with their own. While alive, she made her wishes clear — she did not want to be buried in her family tomb, and, instead, wished to be as close to her husband as possible.

The solution is her grave site. The two tombstones, separated by a wall and by religions, feature a pair of hands connecting over the brick divider.

So what do you think of this final arrangement? Let me know in the comments below. Also… would you do this for yourself and your spouse?

 

 

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