Kathy Hilliard

Member for
10 years · 22 days
Find A Grave ID


My first exploration of cemeteries was an optional high school English assignment to copy interesting epitaphs and carvings. I was intrigued by some findings, but my interest wasn't reawakened until I discovered the joys (and frustrations) of genealogy research.
Living "out West" limits the age of the graveyards, so it's always exciting to find a little spot, often overgrown, with some beautifully carved 19th century markers. A favorite memory was traveling with my daughter and finding a stone in a Scottish kirkyard with the profoundly hopeful inscription, "They have awakened from the dream of life." But topping them all (literally) was standing next to the handcarved rock marking the graves of my great-great-great-grandparents (who remain a "brick wall"), on a windy butte above the Yakima valley.
Sometimes just getting out of the house is called for, and it's always possible to grab a few nearby photo requests, hop in the car, and go on the hunt. If I'm fortunate, I'll be able to fill a gap in someone's search with a picture. If not, my lab Gracie and I will at least have gotten a good drive and walk, and taken glimpses into lives of those gone before.


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