Swift Current Monumental Co. Ltd.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I've never had to purchase a monument before. Where do I start?

A: Cemeteries (even small, rural ones) each have a set of bylaws which vary from one to another. Some have restrictions on how high markers can be, how many monuments are allowed per grave, etc., etc. For this reason, the best place to begin is by contacting the town, city or rural municipality which governs the cemetery you wish to place a monument in. They will answer many first time questions and give you a better understanding of what is involved in regards to installing a monument in their cemetery.

Q: I don't know what we should put on the monument-do you have any suggestions?

A: The design of the monument is one of the most time consuming parts of the process. Once completed, the monument will be in place for a very long time so take time to decide what you'd like. You can visit cemeteries to get ideas or our online gallery of monuments that we've done. We have a large library of in-house designs. Consider the hobbies, interests or even associations the individual was involved with.

Other considerations when deciding on a monument are if the monument will eventually be for two or more people. Information such as the family name, given names, Maiden name, date of birth and date of death.

If the sides are polished, would you like the family name on the front or back? This helps others locate the monument once it's in place in a cemetery. 

Many families choose to include childrens' names on the monument as well

Q: What does a monument cost?

A: Costs vary dependent on a number of things such as size, type, etc. Prices can range from a few hundred to several hundred. Whatever monument you choose and whatever your budget, keep in mind that a monument of granite will be one of the few items you purchase that will last forever.

Q: What's the difference between a FOUNDATION and a BASE?

A: A FOUNDATION is required to give stability to any monument. It helps keep the monument level and prevents sinking. It's sides extend past the monument on all sides by about 3 inches. This keeps grasses from growing directly beside your monument aiding in visibility and protection from grass whippers. All monuments require a foundation. The foundations we sell are made from two inch thick grey granite to last generations.  Some cemeteries are beginning to pour "Strip Foundations" made of concrete. Hillcrest Cemetery in Swift Current and Gull Lake (new section) are among these.
A: A BASE is also made from granite and is thicker (approx. six inches).  A base is required for upright markers and is an option for pillow markers.  A base adds to stability for upright markers as well as increasing visibility for any marker it is used for.  Bases also provide a platform for vases and/or solar lights, etc. We carry grey, black and red bases and can bring in other colors as well.

Q: What things do I need to know before ordering a monument?
A: Most cemeteries have bylaws which may limit the type, size or shape of monument you may choose for your site.  There bylaws are set by each cemetery's governing community and will vary from one cemetery to the next.  To avoid disappointment, it's best to begin by contacting the Town, City, Rural Municipality or company that cares for the cemetery of your choice.

Q: Where can I leave condolences online?

A: In Memoriam  is a website anchored by a network of more than 135 local, Canadian newspapers. It features a searchable database of obituaries from across Canada. It allows condolences to be left online.

Q: How can I remove Lichen (rust colored, hard substance) from a monument?

A: Lichen is an extremely hardy, spore based plant. It thrives in porous stone like concrete. If you can remove it's need for sunlight for a period of 1-6 months, you can kill the existing plant. Covering the lichen with a heavy black tarp will keep light from reaching the lichen. Remove the tarp after a period of months and scrub the surface with a mixture of baking powder and hydrogen peroxide, or a product called "Oxiclean", or "Oxygen Bleach". There is no chlorine in oxygen bleach. The product creates an effervescent action which helps to lift the old spores from the porous stone. Rinse with plain water.
Unfortunately, all this work will remove only the plant/spores that are currently on the stone.  If the stone is in an area which has a lot of lichen in the surrounding area, it's only a matter of time until the spores regenerate and spread again.
More dense stone like granite is less susceptible to lichen as the tight grain of the granite does not provide any spots for the lichen spores to accumulate.

Q: Where can I find out information about my relatives that were buried far away? Do they have a headstone already? Am I able to see what it looks like?

A: There's actually a website called "Find A Grave". It's free to use and lists names of deceased and other information including the cemetery. Often there is a photo of the headstone.  We are not associated with "Find A Grave", but have found it useful in helping other people. To go to the website, click on this link:  Find A Grave

Didn't find your question answered here? Drop us an email and we'll respond!