Saint Remy Rural Cemetery Association

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Frequently Asked Questions


Q: How much does the superintendent/staff get paid?

A: Nothing. Zero. Zilch. We are all volunteers. The only people who receive any pay are the gravediggers, monument companies, and funeral homes. These are all outside contractors. Occasionally, our regular grounds keeper volunteers receive a very small stipend amounting to far less than minimum wage.



Q: Why would you put in so many hours of hard work if you don’t get paid?

A: Volunteerism is what made America strong.

A: Pride

A: Community service

A: We take care of the graves of our ancestors. Why not take care of a few more?

A: We promised grandma

A: We don’t want to see the final resting place of our family and friends turned over to a government agency which would mow only once a year, and ignore the grounds the rest of the time.

A: Fresh air and honest exercise.

A: An interest in history.

A: Somebody has to. Would YOU like to help?


Q: What happened to “perpetual care”.

A: Some years ago New York State eliminated perpetual care. In its place is a rule that every cemetery must place $35 for every burial into a special fund called a “Permanent Maintenance Fund”. The interest from this fund is to be used only for maintenance of the cemetery.


Q: Isn’t the Cemetery wealthy?

A: Cemetery income from investments is about $30 (Thirty dollars) per month. This pays for gasoline for the mower if we are careful. We also sell a few graves each year. Half of this money must go into reserved accounts and the other half covers expenses (paint, repairs, etc). There is no other income.


Q: Why doesn’t the Cemetery hire a professional mowing service.

A: The BEST estimate we received from these services is $600 per mowing. This is the equivalent of 20 months income. We could have them mow once every two years.


Q: Why is the old cemetery at the foot of the hill not well maintained?

A: The Old “Greenkill Community Burying Ground” is owned and maintained by the Town of Esopus. They are only required to mow once a year. Volunteers from the Cemetery Association and from the Saint Remy Church mow once or twice a year more.


Q: What is the history of the cemetery?

A: Please refer to the separate page about cemetery history .


Q: What is your oldest grave?

A: The oldest stones that are still readable are dated 1795 and 1797. The oldest graves probably date from around 1750. We do not know if there are any Indian graves in the cemetery.


Q: What is the Adopt a Grave program?

A: This is a system where people from the community take care of a grave site, or a few, that do not belong their own family. Some mow and maintain sections of the cemetery and others a single grave or two next to their own.

A: Also, in these days of a mobile society, many folks live far from their own ancestors’ resting places and cannot visit them often or easily. Some of these people achieve a sense of comfort and dignity by adopting a stranger’s grave in their community.




Q: How much does this web site cost?

A: Web space and site creation is donated to the Cemetery Association by Karl Wick and Saint Remy dot net. There is no cost to the Cemetery.