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Old 02.11.2011, 20:55
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Can someone tell me what this means.... [Graves in Switzerland]

The City of Zürich places the graves for 20 years at disposal for Zürich resident's. After this time, the grave will be liquided. The tombstone is no longer there. The reason I ask, is because my Mom was buried in Switzerland, and this is what the city of Zurich had told me in an email request I sent. If somebody knows exactly what this means, I would really appreciate an explanation.
Thank you!
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:05
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

Could this explain ? ( in DE - run through a translator if required )
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:08
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

It is fairly common in Europe for standard graves to be emptied after 20 years. The remains are moved to a mass grave, the cemetary keeps records of whom is buried where.
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:10
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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Could this explain ? ( in DE - run through a translator if required )
Thank you JRSPET, but when I did the translation, I got even more confused., Why would the city liquid the cememtary, I thought a cememtary was forever??
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:11
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

Like the previous poster said, it is fairly common. More so in a small country, city etc.
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:12
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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It is fairly common in Europe for standard graves to be emptied after 20 years. The remains are moved to a mass grave, the cemetary keeps records of whom is buried where.
They told me that maybe the maybe the remains may still be there. Also , if moved to a mass grave, how can I send flowers?
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:32
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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Thank you JRSPET, but when I did the translation, I got even more confused., Why would the city liquid the cememtary, I thought a cememtary was forever??
Unlike Canada, Switzerland has pretty limited land resources. Sooner or later the entire country would become a cemetery.

In some other countries, graves are emptied even much sooner. In many areas of Greece, for instance, the are dug out after three years or so. There it can't be a matter of lack of space. I don't know the reason, I never asked.
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:35
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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Unlike Canada, Switzerland has pretty limited land resources. Sooner or later the entire country would become a cemetery.

In some other countries, graves are emptied even much sooner. In many areas of Greece, for instance, the are dug out after three years or so. There it can't be a matter of lack of space. I don't know the reason, I never asked.
Thanks for your response. I guess, yes, it would soon fill up. This is staring to make sense to me. My Uncle had mentioned something to me, but he passed away before I could question it
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Old 02.11.2011, 21:55
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

Our local churchyard has an ossiary for all the remains taken from the reused grave plots. I think the time limit is 20 years.
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Old 02.11.2011, 22:00
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

It depends, crowded places like Zurich have time limits, here they do not.

Tom
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Old 02.11.2011, 22:08
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

To keep a permanent grave for a relative is expensive. If you live locally, they will rent you the space for 50 years at a cost of Fr. 9'900.00 to Fr. 16'500.00 with obligatory maintenance cost of Fr 316.80 per year

http://www.stadt-zuerich.ch/content/...etgraeber.html

The price increases if you live outside of Zurich, there are rates for 30, 40, or 50 years.
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Old 02.11.2011, 23:15
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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Sooner or later the entire country would become a cemetery.
Sometimes it looks like that already happened.
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Old 03.11.2011, 09:36
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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Sometimes it looks like that already happened.
ahh thats why I see many dead man walking
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Old 03.11.2011, 09:47
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

so it begs the question... why keep a grave at all? Graves were supposed to be an eternal resting place. not something ephemeral that your family has to rent for you to rot away in. And cemetaries are a way for families to go back and do some genealogical research, too.

so... it just reaffirms for me that I want to be creamated and have my ashes scattered.
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Old 03.11.2011, 10:16
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

Yes, recycling in Switzerland is endless and even goes beyond death itself...
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Old 03.11.2011, 10:22
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

I visited a big cemetery across from the US embassy in Frankfurt to kill some time while I was waiting, and came across numerous tombstones engraved with "We will never forget you", "Forever in our hearts", "Rest in eternal peace" etc. etc.

And neatly pasted onto them was a sticker from the management saying in effect "The rental period for this plot has expired, would the family please contact the management".
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Old 03.11.2011, 11:44
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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so it begs the question... why keep a grave at all? Graves were supposed to be an eternal resting place.
No, they were not meant for an eternal resting place, rather a place for immediate family to connect or grieve for a period of time. After most immediate family that knew the person pass on, there is little need for such a permanent relic. Thus, 20, 30, 40 years, etc.

At least around here, they contact the next of kin when the lease period is ending and ask if they want it extended or liquidate the grave. Again you pay if you want to keep it. There are at least a number of gravestones in our local cemetary that date more than 100 years, so some distant family member is obviously still paying the rent to keep the grave there.

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And cemetaries are a way for families to go back and do some genealogical research, too.

.
There is no need for cemetary genealogy research in CH, as the written records in the communes and other establishments are more relevant, complete, and available. Even after the cemetary has been liquidated, there is a record of it.

Other places in the world are very different, like the US, where lack of any/complete family records by the state, commune, etc. results in cemetary searches.
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Old 03.11.2011, 14:36
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

Thank you everyone for your replies. You've been a great help , so by doing this to the cemetary , do they use the spots for other ppl who have died and just place new tombstones??
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Old 03.11.2011, 14:38
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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so by doing this to the cemetary , do they use the spots for other ppl who have died and just place new tombstones??
New coffins, too. Otherwise, yes.
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Old 03.11.2011, 14:41
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Re: Can someone tell me what this means....

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New coffins, too. Otherwise, yes.
Thanks for your reply. I guess now I fully understand why this have been done.
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