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I've used find-a-grave for just a few memorials. I don't recommend putting a lot of time into it, because apparently your memorials can be arbitrarily removed. Find-a-grave seems to encourage, and favor, those who rack up massive numbers of memorials (tens or even hundreds of thousands of memorials). I don't like their practice of doing this for veteran cemeteries, and I describe below how one of these mass-accumulators hijacked the memorial for my veteran father to add to her "collection".

How can one individual possibly create 25,000, 50,000 or 100,000 memorials? And why? In 2013, find-a grave was acquired by ancestry.com, which, according to some opinions on the web, has ties to members of the mormon (LDS) church. I'm speculating, but it may be ancestry.com or the mormon church are providing the grave accumulators with records for find-a-grave. Ancestry.com might do this to increase interest in genealogy and their expensive subscription services; the mormons practice baptism of the dead and have for decades created enormous genealogy databases so that mormons, as I understand, can baptize the dead, so that the dead can choose to become mormons even if they died before the mormon church was established in 1830. This is very controversial. There are reports on the web that mormons have proxy baptized Hitler (WTF?), Gandhi, Joan of Arc and Princess Diana. For whatever possibly bizarre reasons, something is motivating hoarder-like behaviors by the mass grave accumulators.

There are reports on the web that mass-accumulators are reluctant to transfer "their" memorials to family members, in violation of find-a grave policy, and if you complain, you can be banned and all your memorials removed, because find-grave favors the mass -accumulators. It's a free site but it's a business. Don't expect fairness or respect. Your memorial might be precious to you, but to find-a grave it's literally just a number.

I had a bizarre experience myself with one of these mass-accumulators. My parents are buried in a veteran's cemetery. I had immediately created my father's memorial after his death, with my father's picture, and linked it to the memorials I had created for his wife, parents and brother. I checked it one day and my record was gone, with a new copy "owned" by a user "Sidney" who has 25,000 memorials, and is a stranger to my family. Her copy listed the family links and photo I had entered on my record, and she had added a sloppy sideways grave stone picture to her hijacked version. When I requested a transfer, "Sidney" went ballistic and immediately deleted her hijacked version of my father's memorial, and the photos attached to it. To me, that indicated she had tried to hijack my Dad's memorial, then tried to hide the evidence by deleting her hijacked record. When I complained, she threatened to ban me, which would probably cause all my memorials to be deleted, perhaps to be gobbled up by her. "Sidney" did all this on Memorial Day.

I complained to find-a-grave and got this response: "In this situation, both you and the other contributor had created a page for your father. A third contributor sent us a message asking us to merge the duplicate entries, which we did according to our site policy. We do apologize, as it appears as if this created the misunderstanding that led to the written altercation in question."

This is an absurd response. I had created the original record, the records of Dad's immediate family, and supplied the photo and biographical information. What "policy" could possibly allow this record to be given/"merged" to a mass-accumulator?

"Sidney's" profile euphemistically refers to correcting and deleting thousands of veterans' memorials. By hastily and maliciously deleting a memorial they hijack/"correct"/recreate, accumulators can attempt to erase their violations of find-a-grave policies. What other motivation would they have for disrespectfully deleting a veteran's memorial and photos, instead of transferring the memorial?

User "Sidney" maintains and is pictured by the find-a-grave record of David Coulombe at the National Cemetery in Santa Fe, NM. From that record (and many more at that cemetery which she "owns"), "Sidney's" profile can be accessed for more information. Googling Sidney Coulombe produces some genealogy posts that appear to reveal her identity.

I post my unfortunate experience here to discourage her from violating the memorials of other veterans.


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