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Wife preserves memory of . . . . . 1988


Posted By: Volunteer: Sherri
Date: 12/29/2023 at 18:54:30

VB Co Reg
1989 DE 14

Wife preserves memory of husband, daughter through unique headstone

Rhonda Murphy Doud wanted to do something to preserve the memory of her husband, Tony and daughter, Samara, after father and daughter were killed in a car accident in August, 1988.

The result is a headstone, made of Rock of Ages Black Granite with a portrait of Tony and Samara engraved on one side and a nature scene on the other.

The stone sits on a site near the entrance of Pittsburg Cemetery.

"I looked at other stones in the cemetery," Rhonda said, "and I wasn't satisfied with the stones I saw. I wanted something that told about Tony and Samara."

Tony, the son of Ralph and Marie Doud, Keosauqua, graduated from Van Buren High School in 1970.

He and Rhonda were living in Burlington when the incident occurred.

After checking around, Rhonda found an engraver willing to undertake a challenge.

Roy E. Dixon II, Burlington, 31, works for Leyda, Burrus and Metz Monument Company in Burlington and is working there under a 10-year contract.

Leyda, Burrus and Metz are representatives for 'Rock of Ages' granite.

Getting the stone here was no ordinary feat, because the special black granite Rhonda Doud wanted had to be ordered from South Africa.

Actual work on the stone he said took around three months.

Using photos, Dixon used unique engraving techniques which give a lot of detail to the final work. Rhonda said she was pleased with the final product because Tony and Samara's likenesses really show.

Other parts of the stone were "ad-libbed," Roy said.

The engraving is a series of small dots.

"It's the best granite available and this was on of the most challenging jobs I've had," Dixon said.

He's been doing this line of work since he was 12.

On side of the stone has Samara holding her pet rabbit Kari, with Tony looking on. Samara's horse Rusty is also in the scene.

The other side is one of a buck and fawn, symbolizing father and daughter and Tony's love for the outdoors.

Rhonda is a family therapist for Young House Family Services in Burlington. She graduated from West Burlington.

Source: "Scrapbook 1986 - 1988", Pg. 465,
Keosauqua Public Library, Keosauqua, Van Buren Co., IA


Van Buren Documents maintained by Rich Lowe.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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