Within the last month I found my sister's obituary on Find a Grave, word for word how my family and I prepared it. It was submitted by someone we do not know, nor were we approached for permission.
At first I was really concerned about their failure to ask permission since my sister was cremated and we are still unable to carry out her wishes for her ashes. It is interesting that we have the ashes of her first husband and those of her beloved pit bull, Snookie. As I thought about it, I decided it was a good thing so I uploaded two pictures of her that seem to display her essence,one she never lost. I also added a photo of an Ichiban plant.
Her last summer, 2011, she talked me into planting a vegetable and herb garden. She wanted the Ichiban, or Japanese Egglplant. It was one of the few vegetables we actually realized during the HOTTEST summer Tulsa had in many decades. But she didn't live to see it or the Sunflowers (her favorite)I secretly planted right in front of the house.
This is the third year I have pretended to start a garden, but something strange happened. Nothing is dying. No shriveling, dry plants that blow away in the wind. As I sit outside surrounded by a dozen fully laden tomato plants, tons of zucchini, half a dozen peppers of different varieties and beautiful sweet smelling herbs.
My sister, who had two green thumbs would love this. So I thought I would remember my sister and our gardening experience just before she died. When I clicked the link to upload the comment, I ended up with a message telling me that something in my message was flagged as needing personal attention before it is published but that it usually only takes 24 hours. Seven days later my comments were still not there.
On my own sister's memorial page, I could not comment. The woman, Okiebran, who published the memorial, the one my family and I wrote, does not allow messages so I had no way to contact her to ask what the problem is. I emailed the appropriate people. Still no answer.
I tried to register with the forum so I could ask other users for help. Although I was able to register, I never received the email with the necessary verification link. Not after the half a dozen times I registered over 72 hours. So I sent another email.
Nothing. Then I decided I would simply add my complaints to the family pages of those listed on the Find a Grave contributors. I left a plethora of lengthy complaints about the fact that a complete stranger can shanghai my writing and then administrators who have no accountability can prevent me from posting a comment to my own sister's memorial. I also suggested that while my older sister, the attorney, could take over my attempts to contact them, I could be contacting their web host and ancestory.com.
who advertises on their pages. I told them I wanted her memorial removed immediately. And it has been.
So my suggestion to those as unhappy with Find a Grave, post on their public message pages and on their family memorial pages.
In a matter of hours, my sister's memorial was removed.
Now I am going to attempt to release the anger their careless disregard created and go back out to my sister's real memorial. The lush, verdant produce in her front yard.
Product or Service Mentioned: Find A Grave Forum.
Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma