Title:
Cemetery monument, memorial or grave marker and method for assembling same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention is a cemetery monument, memorial or grave marker and a method for assembling the same. The monument is attached to a solid stone base. Vertical metal or stone panels are affixed to each other and a top and bottom horizontal panel to form a substantially hollow chamber. At least one of the panels contains memorial indicia of the deceased. Openings are provided through at least one panel forming a decorative pattern. The monument or grave marker further includes illumination means and a power source electrically coupled to the illumination means.



Inventors:
Rodrigues, Robert Wallace (Bound Brook, NJ, US)
Application Number:
09/934396
Publication Date:
02/27/2003
Filing Date:
08/22/2001
Assignee:
RODRIGUES ROBERT WALLACE
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04H13/00; (IPC1-7): E01F9/011; E04H13/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, CHI Q
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
THOMAS R. FARINO, JR. (One Rossmoor Drive, Monroe Township, NJ, 08831, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A cemetery monument for the deceased comprising: A stone base, A plurality of spaced-apart vertical panels attached to said base; A top panel and a bottom panel attached to said vertical panels thus defining a hollow Enclosure, at least one of said vertical panels containing indicia of the deceased thereon.

2. The monument of claim 1 wherein said panels are constructed of stone or metal.

3. The monument of claim 1, wherein said panels may be of various sizes, shapes and thicknesses.

4. The monument of claim 1, wherein said panels may carry or contain etched, carved or cast memorial or identifying information.

5. The monument of claim 1, wherein said panel edges may be angled to allow the assembly of encloses of various shapes and designs.

6. The monument of claim 1, wherein said panels may be aligned by stainless steel set pins positioned in a panel edge that correspond to holes located in adjoining panels.

7. The monument of claim 1, wherein said panels are joined together by a bonding agent or fastening means.

8. The monument of claim 1, wherein said bonding agent is an epoxy resin.

9. The monument of claim 1, wherein said fastening means include threaded bolts and nuts or rod or coupling assemblies.

10. The monument of claim 1, wherein said fastening means may be decorative and provide security.

11. The monument described in claim 1, wherein said panel edges may contain gasketing or sealing material to prevent water infiltration into the enclosure.

12. The monument described in claim 1, wherein one or more of said panels may have an attached metal inscription plaque for descriptive information.

13. The monument described in claim 12 wherein said plaque is mechanically fastened to said panel.

14. The monument described in claim 12 wherein said plaque may contain gasketing or sealing material.

15. A cemetery monument for the deceased comprising; A stone base; A vase; A plurality of spaced-apart vertical panels attached to said base; A top panel attached to said vertical panels thus defining a hollow enclosure, at least one of said vertical panels containing indicia of the deceased thereon.

16. The monument of claim 15 wherein said vertical panels comprise two side panels and a front end rear panel.

17. The monument of claim 15 wherein said panels are constructed of stone or metal.

18. The cemetery monument of claim 15 wherein said panels may carry or contain etched, carved or cast memorial or identifying information.

19. The cemetery monument of claim 16 wherein said side panels each have two vertical flanges on the front and rear inside edges that receive the vertical side edges of the front and rear panels, thus maintaining them in a vertical or slightly angled parallel separation.

20. The cemetery monument of claim 16 wherein said front panels and said rear panels are secured using decorative nuts and a threaded rod or coupling structure or device attached on the interior of the enclosure which allow said front and rear panels to be secured into the carved flanged areas on the side panels with said side panels providing a separation of said front and rear panels enabling the creation of a hollow enclosure.

21. The cemetery monument of claim 15 wherein an illuminating means is provided on the interior of the enclosure with supporting power means electrically coupled to said illumination means for providing said electrical power.

22. The cemetery monument of claim 21 wherein said illumination means contains a controlled mechanism.

23. The cemetery monument of claim 21 wherein the source of said electrical power is solar energy.

24. The cemetery monument of claim 18 wherein said etched, carved or cast memorial, artistic or identifying information or elements are carved into and through the panel creating an aperture to the interior of said monument.

25. The cemetery moniment of claim 24 wherein said apertures may be sealed using translucent panels secured on the interior of said structural panel surfaces to prevent leakage.

26. The cemetery monument of claim 25 wherein said translucent panels may be constructed of plastic or glass.

27. The cemetery monument of claim 26 wherein said translucent panels may be colored.

28. A grave market for the deceased comprising: A plurality of spaced-apart vertical panels; A top and bottom horizontal panel attached to said vertical panel, thus defining a hollow enclosure, at least one of said panels containing indicia of the deceased thereon.

29. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said panels are constructed of stone or metal.

30. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said panels may carry or contain etched, carved or cast memorial or identifying information.

31. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said panels may be aligned by stainless steel set pins positioned in a panel edge edge that correspond to holes located in adjoining panels.

32. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said panels are joined together by a bonding agent or fastening means.

33. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said fastening means include threaded bolts and nuts or rod or coupling assemblies.

34. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said fastening means may be decorative and provide security.

35. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said panel edges may contain gasketing material to prevent water infiltration into the enclosure.

36. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein one of said panels may have an attached metal inscription plaque for descriptive information.

37. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said plaque is mechanically fastened to said panel.

38. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein said plaque may contain gasketing or sealing material.

39. The grave marker of claim 28, wherein an illuminating means is provided on the interior of the enclosure with supporting power means electrically coupled to said illuminating means for providing said electric power.

40. The grave marker in claim 39. Wherein said illumination means contains a controlled mechanism.

41. The grave marker of claim 39, wherein the source of said electrical power is solar energy.

42. The grave marker of claim 30, wherein said etched, carved or cast memorial, artistic or identifying information or elements are carved into and through the panel creating an aperture to the interior of said grave marker.

43. The grave marker of claim 42, wherein said apertures may be sealed using translucent panels secured on the interior of said structural panels surfaces to prevent water infiltration.

44. The grave marker of claim 43, wherein said translucent panels my be constructed of plastic or glass.

45. The grave marker of claim 44, wherein said translucent panels may be colored.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] This invention relates generally to cemetery monuments, memorials or grave markers.

[0003] 2. Description of the Prior Art

[0004] In many cultures, it is common practice for family and friends to commemorate a dearly departed through the creation and placement of a monument or grave marker at the deceased's place of burial. Typically, these memorials are constructed of materials durable enough to withstand the passage of time and effects of weather and include materials such as stone and metal.

[0005] The use of stone in the construction of monuments and memorials usually involves the cutting of a single solid flat section of marble or granite to the desired size and shape, polishing one or more of the surfaces and etching or carving into the material the relevant information about the deceased, including names, dates, inscriptions and decorative or religious elements. The design, size and thickness of the memorials constructed in this fashion can vary significantly and includes both upright monuments and ground-level markers.

[0006] The difficulties associated with using these stone materials for memorial construction arises when one considers the overall mass of the material. The weight of marble and granite makes working with these materials very difficult and can contribute to the overall cost of producing, transporting and installation of the memorial. Based on this information, it would be apparent that the creation of a monument or marker that is considerably lighter and easier to handle, yet is constructed from material that are durable in nature, would have significant advantages over solid granite or marble materials.

[0007] The construction of a monument or marker utilizing thin panels of granite, marble or metal that are joined or fastened together would prove to be a viable alternative to solid monument construction and prove to be more cost effective to produce, transport and install, yet having little effect on the overall quality, durability or appearance of the memorial.

[0008] Due to the substantial weight of prior art memorials, a stone foundation or base is usually required to support them. The cemetery monument described herein would be considerably lighter and allow a smaller supporting base to be substituted, thereby further decreasing the cost associated with this type of memorial.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] It is a first objective of the present invention to create a cemetery monument, or memorial, or grave marker from stone or metal panels as an alternative to present monument, memorial or grave marker construction that would be more cost effective to produce in that it would require less specialized equipment for manufacturing and promote easier handling and workability, transporting and assembly.

[0010] Another object is to create a hollow cemetery monument or grave marker.

[0011] It is a further object of the invention to provide a cemetery monument or grave marker that would facilitate the attachment of metal inscription panels or plaques.

[0012] It is yet a further object of the present invention to provide a cemetery monument or grave marker with a hollowed interior chamber that can be used for the storage of memorial or commemorative items.

[0013] It is a further object of the invention to provide for a monument or grave marker with an interior solar powered light source that will provide illumination and will radiate through apertures cut or carved into the panels of the monument or grave marker, causing a radiant effect of those images, letters or designs outwardly to the surrounding area.

[0014] It is a further object of the invention to provide for a monument that facilitates the installation of a memorial display case as described in my Patent No. D436,758.

[0015] In a first embodiment, an upright monument or ground level marker is constructed of stone panels that are aligned and fastened together in a specific fashion and held in place by a bonding or sealing agent and mechanical fastening means to create a monument with a hollowed or enclosed interior space. The stone panels may be etched or carved with the relevant information about the deceased including names, dates, inscriptions and decorative or religious elements.

[0016] In another embodiment, decorative stone or metal members may be attached to the monument at its top and sides. These decorative members serve to cover any seams created by the joining of the panels. These decorative members may be secured to the monument using metal set pins.

[0017] In another embodiment, one or more of the stone panels may be substituted with a metal panel. The metal panel may have cost or engraved information relating to the deceased.

[0018] In another embodiment, an upright monument or grave marker containing a metal inscription panel or plaque mechanically fastened to one or more sides of the monument or grave marker serves as a cover to an opening that allows access to the interior of the monument or marker, thus affording heirs the opportunity to store or enclose religious, personal or commemorative items within the monument or grave marker. These items might include an urn. The metal panel, or plaque might also be engraved to include names, dates, and religious or personal information. The metal panel or plaque may also contain a gasketing material at adjoining edges to prevent moisture from leaking to the interior.

[0019] In another embodiment, a monument or grave marker is provided with an open interior space that facilitates the placement of an interior solar powered light source providing illumination that will radiate through apertures cut or carved into the panels of the monument or grave marker, causing a radiant effect to those images, letters or designs outwardly to the surrounding area. The interior surface of those panels that have carved openings or apertures may be sealed using gasketing means and a rigid translucent plastic or glass material may be colored to allow a variety of colored effects to be observed.

[0020] The term “memorial” refers to all cemetery and civic monuments and markers used for identification or commemoration.

[0021] This and other features, objects and advantages of the present invention are described or are implicit in the following detailed description or various preferred embodiments.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] FIG. 1 is a front elevation of a cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0023] FIG. 2 is a side cross-sectional view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 1;

[0024] FIG. 3 is a top cross-sectional plan view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 1;

[0025] FIG. 4 is a front elevation of a further preferred embodiment of a cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0026] FIG. 5 is a side cross-sectional view of the monument or grave marker or FIG. 4;

[0027] FIG. 6 is a top cross-sectional plan view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 4;

[0028] FIG. 7 is a front elevation of yet further preferred embodiment of a cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0029] FIG. 8 is a side cross-sectional view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 7;

[0030] FIG. 9 is a top cross-sectional plan view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 7;

[0031] FIG. 10 is a top cross-section plan view of the monument or rave marker of FIG. 7, depicting threaded metal studs;

[0032] FIG. 11 is a top view of the vertical side members to show the details of the vertical grooves of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 7;

[0033] FIG. 12 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0034] FIG. 13 is a side cross-section view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 12, showing details of panel attachment without decorative members;

[0035] FIG. 14 is a top cross-section plan view of the monument or grave maker of FIG. 12;

[0036] FIG. 15 is a front elevation of a further preferred embodiment of a cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0037] FIG. 16 is a close-up of attachment screw or fasteners with coupling device and front and rear panels of FIG. 12.

[0038] FIG. 17 is a front elevation of a further preferred embodiment of a cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0039] FIG. 18 depicts a further embodiment of the monument or grave marker shown in FIG. 17 without a panel in the recessed area, depicting a flange in the cored areas;

[0040] FIG. 19 is a top-plan view of the monument or grave marker in FIG. 17;

[0041] FIG. 20 is a die cross-sectional view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 18, depicting a core extending through the stone monument or grave marker, partially or completely;

[0042] FIG. 21 is a front view of the carved or cast panel design with cross-shaped aperture through panel;

[0043] FIG. 22 is a side view of the inside surface of the panel member depicted in FIG. 1, with a fastened plastic or glass panel or window;

[0044] FIG. 23 is a front view of another carved or cast design with heart-shaped aperture extending through panel;

[0045] FIG. 24 is a front elevation of a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0046] FIG. 25 is a side cross-section view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 24;

[0047] FIG. 26 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0048] FIG. 27 is a side cross-section view of the monument of grave marker of FIG. 26;

[0049] FIG. 28 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument of grave marker of the present invention;

[0050] FIG. 29 is a side cross-section view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 28;

[0051] FIG. 30 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument of the present invention;

[0052] FIG. 31 is a side cross-section view of the monument of FIG. 30;

[0053] FIG. 32 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument of the present invention;

[0054] FIG. 33 is a front elevation of a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument of the present invention;

[0055] FIG. 34 is a front elevation of yet a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention;

[0056] FIG. 35 is a side cross-section view of the monument or grave marker of FIG. 34;

[0057] FIG. 36 is a top-plan view of a further preferred embodiment of the cemetery monument or grave marker of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0058] A monument or grave marker 10 according to the present invention is illustrated in FIG. 1. The monument or grave marker 10 includes a base member 12, four vertical panel members 14, 16, 18, 20 and a top member 22. The attachment of all panel members defines a central hollow cavity, 24. Base member 12 supports the attached vertical and top members in a substantially vertical position. Panel members 14, 16, 18, 20 and 22 are attached t one another by means of decorative bolts and anchors 26 fixed in the panel members. Each panel member is secured to base 12 by means of steel pins 28 which extend vertically out the base into the panels within pre-drilled holes formed in the panels an base. Panel member 14 contains indicia 30 thereon to identify and memorialize the decedent. This indicia may be cast or etched onto panel members 14, 16, 18, 20, or 22.

[0059] Panel members 14, 16, 18, and 20, or 22 may be constructed of stone or metal such as bronze, aluminum, or stainless steel.

[0060] A second embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 4-6. Here the panel members 40, 42, 44, 46, 54 and 56 are attached by means of metal set pins 48 and decorative bolts 50 which thread into threaded metal rods 52 or a coupling device located between the front and back panel members 40, 42 and against top and bottom members 54, 56 and panel members 44, 46.

[0061] A third embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 7-11, in which side panel members 60, 62 have vertical outward facing grooves that receive front and rear panel members 64, 66 and maintain them in a vertical or slightly angles parallel position by means of decorative bolts 68 and threaded metal rod 70 or a coupling device 72. Coupling device 72 is shown in greater detail in FIG. 16 and comprises adjustable coupling sleeves 76, threaded rod 70, decorative bolt 68, nuts 74, and adjusting screws 77. Front and back panel members 64, 66 may be of metal or stone composition and may also carry cast or etched information on their surfaces.

[0062] A fourth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 12 and 15 in which non-supportive decorative members 80, 81 are attached to the top panel 82 and base member 88 by means of metal set pins 84 in combination with a bonding/sealing agent such as epoxy. Also, side decorative members 80 are attached to base and top decorative members 80 in FIGS. 12 and 15.

[0063] A fifth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 17, 18 in which a hole 90 is cord or cut into a standard solid stone monument 92 to create a cavity in the monument. The open ends or end of the cavity 90 may be fitted with recessed stone or metal panels as depicted in FIGS. 21, 23 of varying designs and shape. These panels may contain religious or other decorative symbols etched or cast into the panels, such as a cross or heart as shown in FIGS. 21, 23. These religious or decorative symbols may be carved, etched or cast through the panels to create an aperture or opening in the panel. These panels are attached to the cavity by bonding or fastening means.

[0064] The inside surface of the panel is fitted with a translucent glass or plastic material attached by bonding means or a bolt and anchor assembly as shown in FIG. 22. In the case of a metal panel, the metal panel may be drilled and threaded so that the translucent plastic or glass may be fastened to the inside of the panel. Solar panels 94 are mounted into the top panel 96 or in a side panel to collect solar energy for powering lighting assembly 98 mounted in the cored out cavity as shown in FIG. 20. The design and shape of the recessed panel members may vary and contain various artistic and religious elements or letters carved or cast to create apertures in the panels that may be covered with translucent material to allow the radiation of light and illumination of the panel image.

[0065] A sixth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 24, 25 in which decorative metal plaque 100 is affixed to stone panel member 102 by means of decorative bolts 104 in combination with nuts 106.

[0066] A seventh embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 26, 27 where threaded metal studs 108 in combination with nuts 110 are utilized, thus avoiding the use of decorative bolts 104, as shown in FIG. 24.

[0067] An eighth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 28 through 31 in which stone or metal front panel 120 has a cutout 122 to receive a Memorial Display Case as described by my design patent No. D436,758. FIGS. 30, 31 depict the Memorial Display Case 124 mounted in stone or metal panel member 126.

[0068] A ninth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 32 through 36 in which monuments of varying designs and shapes are depicted. FIG. 32 depicts a monument in which front and back panel members 130 are trapezoidal in shape. FIGS. 33, 34, and 35 depict a monument panel construction which allows for the inclusion of vases 132 or a planter 134.

[0069] A tenth embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 36 in which more than four panel members 140 are fastened by the means previously depicted and described in this specification. In FIG. 36, an octagonal monument of eight sides is shown.

[0070] Various preferred embodiments of the present invention have been described. It is understood, however, that changes and modifications can be made without departing from the true scope and spirit of the present invention as defined by the following claims, which are to be interpreted in view of the foregoing.