Buddy Leech

Member for
6 years · 6 months · 20 days
Find a Grave ID


"Permanent" markers-flag holders have now been placed at each known veteran's gravesite in McDowell Cemetery (Town of Wayne; Steuben Co., NY), as well as in Tyrone Union and Wayne Village Cemeteries (Town of Tyrone; Schuyler Co., NY).

As the Town of Wayne History Group "Cemetery Man", I've expanded from linking just veterans to linking all interred in local cemeteries to family members with a Find A Grave Memorial anywhere. I am now including obituaries and other biographical information for all interred as well. While a majority of my work is in the Finger Lakes Region of New York, I have now worked extensively (electronically) in cemeteries in many states as I follow family members who have moved out of the Finger Lakes Region. If I see edits that can easily be made for anybody interred anywhere, I submit them. I have now visited and photographed in several PA, MO, and TX cemeteries, in addition to NY.

In September, 2012, I started the Sons of the American Legion (Wayne, NY Post 1208) Graveyard Committee to identify veterans buried in area cemeteries to help ensure that they are recognized properly. We strive to place and maintain "permanent" markers-flag holders at each gravesite.

In 2014 I was asked to join the Town of Wayne History Group as the "Cemetery Man", so now I'm interested in all cemeteries in the Town, as well as veterans buried within.

I joined Find A Grave March 31, 2015 in order to share information. I'm photographing veterans' gravesites, as well as others (including photo requests), as we work through the various area cemeteries. I've established several Find A Grave Memorials to honor veterans, as well as for those whose headstones I've photographed and who didn't have a Memorial. I'm also linking veterans to immediate family members (parents, spouses, children) buried in the same cemetery, as well as elsewhere as I'm able to determine. Finally, I'm including veteran status information in their Memorial biographies.


On Nastygrams. I have gotten very few "Nastygram" Messages. These are easily recognized by anybody reading them as an attempt to convey an uncomplimentary message. I leave these as is, feeling that they don't necessarily reflect badly on me. So far my email address is available for anybody having an issue to discuss with me. I feel it better to take personal squabbles off line, if possible. In this case it is possible. If you have an issue, just shoot me an email and tell me what's bugging you.

On Memorial Photographs: When I became a Find A Grave Contributor on 31 March 2015, there was a five photo limit on unsponsored Memorials. With that restriction, it was important not to add a second similar photo unless the original was of poor quality and a new photo unquestionably better. The intent was to leave room for photos of the deceased or important documentation other than obituaries. With "New Site" development, the photo limit on an unsponsored Memorial has been greatly increased. Each member can upload five photos for a Memorial, which has a maximum of 20 photos. A Memorial sponsor can add an additional 10 photos for a total of 30 on the Memorial. It's difficult for me to imagine a Memorial hitting its photo maximum.

My goals for photography, not always achieved, are to: 1) photograph all markers pertaining to a person, separately and as a group, 2) photograph marker "back" side inscriptions, 3) take close up photos of noteworthy area(s) of inscriptions, 4) identify and photograph all family markers obviously grouped together, and 5) photograph special burial areas set aside within a cemetery and which include the memorialized individual. The latter two types of photographs will help anybody trying to locate a particular gravesite. I will upload up to five of these photographs if they are of acceptable quality IMHO. Please feel free to use my photos. Just cite the source.

Although I can't locate the source, I have read Find A Grave prefers that the entire marker be visible in a photograph and that excess background be trimmed. There are other incontrovertible qualities desired in photographs, e.g., no shoes, no people and/or vehicles in the background, no reflection of the photographer on the gravestone, sun angle that enhances inscriptions, no shadows (all sun or all shade), no shadows of yourself, no grass clippings, no over grown weeds, no decorations concealing inscription information, no dirt, no leaves, etc.

In the field I don't typically know if a gravesite has been photographed, but find out later while processing photos at home. Already some of my time has been consumed and expenses incurred in the process of taking photos, just as with any photographer. In considering whether to post a "similar" photo, I ask myself, "Would an individual interested in the person memorialized rather have my photo or the similar one already posted?" I won't post my photo if it's a close call. Some Memorial creators will agree with this statement and others won't. That's life. You don't own the Memorial, just manage it. If you don't like my photo as the "Cover Photo" or any of my photos being "ahead" of yours, then please move yours back ahead of mine.

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