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Heiners

July 24, 2010

Heiners front

Heiners reverse

Congressional Cemetery in Washington, DC

Alright, Google isn’t helping me much.  I don’t know who Jeffrey Alan Heiners was.  A photojournalist apparently, but I am not really finding any information beyond that.

Regardless, I found this stone sort of funny.  I really wish I knew some context for the quotation.  Who said it?  What is their accent?  What is it in reference to?

Was it actually a quotation from a real person at all? Or did Mr. Heiners just decide to put that on his grave because he came up with it and thought it was funny?  I don’t know!

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Elaine permalink
    December 4, 2010 1:07 am

    Jeff was a photojournalist for Gannett, traveled all around the world. He used to answer his phone with the message on his gravestone when telemarketers would call. At age 37, he came home one day, laid down for a nap and never woke up. Seemed appropriate to put that on his gravestone.

    Jeff’s cousin, Elaine

    P.S. Finally googled my cousin after 30 years and saw your site. Pretty Cool!

    • December 4, 2010 4:28 am

      Oh WOW, thank you for explaining!! That definitely makes sense… and can I just say, I’m super excited that you posted this. I’ve been on a hiatus from the blog but seeing your comment put a huge smile on my face. I am so so glad you shared this with me.

      It’s one thing to view a person as a stranger – I see the few lines of text on a stone, the little tidbits of information that were distilled out of a full and interesting life. I love seeing what people use to memorialize their loved ones… but in cases like this, I’m so glad to know that there is a backstory. It’s easy to fall into a rut of viewing the deceased as one-dimensional characters. Their lives have nothing to do with mine, so all I know of them is what’s written on the stone. I don’t ever want to view people like that. I need to keep in mind that each of these people whose graves I visit… they have a whole history, more than just what’s on the stone. And that is just… awesome. So thank you for helping me put that back into perspective!!

  2. Elaine permalink
    December 4, 2010 1:11 am

    oops, 20 years since Jeff passed…typo on my part. Gone too long any way you type it.

  3. Laura (Fink) Hill permalink
    November 22, 2013 3:55 pm

    Don’t know if this blog is still up & running, but, thought I’d put my 2 cents in! Jeff was my uncle. He died when I was a sophomore at Carthage College in Kenosha, WI. (Our family was originally from the Milwaukee area.) What’s even more tragic than him dying of a sudden & unexpected heart attack at the age of 36, is that it was a week before he was to get married. Fortunately his fiance was able to heal & move on, years later.

    There is another wink to his sense of humor in that he is buried near Matthew Brady – the pioneering Civil War photographer. I suppose they’re up there somewhere sharing exciting stories – Mr. Brady about the battlefield & Jeff about his world travels. And, I’m sure Jeff has a cocktail in one hand & a cigarette in the other!

    I’m always so tickled when I find out someone has found his gravestone so amusing (or puzzling). I found on some website a group who plays a type of “scavenger hunt” in cemeteries. His stone was a clue!

    Anyway, hope you find this interesting!

    Laura (Fink) Hill
    Sandwich, IL

    • November 22, 2013 4:40 pm

      Blog’s not really active lately, maybe I’ll get back into it some day… but wow, thank you for sharing!

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