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On Monday 19 November 2007, Roy Strickland, Sylvan Strickland, and Jim Riley visited the Old Center Methodist Cemetery to determine the condition of the Grave Sites of John, Sr and Mary Whitaker Riley and four of their children whom are buried there. we were met by James Riley of nearby Headland Alabama, a kinsman and local Craftsman of Cemetery Monuments. All of the sites are situated on stable soil and sparsely covered with grass.
The plots of John, Sr and mary Whitaker Riley, Edward R. Sr and mary outlaw Riley, Moses and Sarah Enfinger Riley, and Elender Riley and John Grady Ward, consists of two grave sites each and are approximately 10X10 feet in size. The plot of Daniel consists of three grave sites and is approximately 10X15 feet in size. His first wife, Mary Ann Brannon Riley, and his second wife, Lucinda Eural Riley, are both buried there.
Lets look at each plot in order and consider the condition and options that are available to us.
The plot for John, Sr and Mary Whitaker Riley is enclosed with a Iron rail fence that was erected in April 1885.
It's structure appears to be good but completely covered with rust. Because of it's long endurance it likely has become a landmark and the thought of removing, or replacing it may be repugnant to some. However that is an option to consider. The grave marker is a double headstone with a vertical center line to separate the names.
Option 1. Leave the fence as is and replace the existing double headstone with a Larger, thicker double headstone of Georgia Gray Granite pemanently glued to a concrete base; Cost $300.00. This includes engraving the data that is on the old headstone plus adding the maiden names of wives if desired.
Option 2. Remove the fence and construct a 10X10 foot concrete border about 6" wide and of sufficient depth to pour a concrete foundation and cover it with gray gravel which provides a permanent solution to upkeep and an appealing appearance; Cost $2150.00. This includes the double headstone as described in option 1, but not removal of the fence.
Option 3. Replacement of the fence. Cost not considered.
The plot for Edward R. Sr and Mary Outlaw Riley consists of two grave sites with single headstones.
Option 1. Leave the site as is and replace the single headstones with the same material described in option 1 for John Sr. Cost $220.00 each which includes a small footer stone that marks the perimeter.
Option 2. Same as option 2 for the John Sr. plot. Cost $2150.00.
The plot for Daniel, Mary Ann Brannon Riley and Lucinda Eural Riley. Replace the single headstones as described in option 1 for Edward. Cost $220.00 each.
The plot for Moses and Sarah Enfinger Riley. Sarah's headstone is broken and needs to be replaced. Cost $220.00. Moses headstone could be left as is with cleaning but would not be of the quality and appearance of Sarah's. Replacement; $220.00. Also option two for the John Sr. plot could be considered. Cost $2150.00.
The John Grady and Elender Riley Ward plot has been well maintained by their descendents and could be left as is with cleaning. Single replacement headstones as previously described for $220.00 each or the enclosed plot with a double headstone for $2150.00 is an option for consideration.
Mister James Riley was very patient and provided costs and recommendations on different options that are available for our consideration. He recommends the Georgia Gray Granite as the most durable materiel and just replacing the existing headstones as the least expensive method to provide a permanent grave marker.
He would provide a concrete base and permanently glue the headstone to it.
I suggest we add Sr. to John Riley's name and the maiden names of the wives. We solicit the comments of everyone on the options that are available, your preference, and willingness to support. Once the options are selected and funds available, Roy Strickland and I will coordinate with James Riley to accomplish the work. If anyone should desire to speak with James Riley directly, his phone number is 1 334 693 5409.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL. JIM RILEY