"Loren Rhoads started visiting cemeteries by accident. It was the start of a love affair with cemeteries that continues to this day. In Wish You Were Here, Rhoads blends history with storytelling and her photos accompany each essay."--American Cemetery magazine
"Wish You Were Here captures well why many of us find cemeteries fascinating: because of the history and stories of so many interesting people buried there!"--Richard Waterhouse, Waterhouse Symbolism Newsletter
From the Author
As it happened, one graveyard led to another. Mason and I decided to visit Pere Lachaise in Paris because so many famous people came to rest there. As we wandered, we accidentally discovered my favorite grave marker in all the world: shackled in the granite, Prometheus raises one fist against the gods. If that doesn't sum up my feeling about death, I don't know what might.
So I started looking at graveyards because they were pretty, then because famous people rested there. I quickly learned that practically anonymous gravestones tell the best stories. I developed a fascination with history, as reflected in burial grounds, which led to studying trends in mortuary decoration. You can say I'm obsessed. I don't mind.
In my travels, I've discovered that graveyards are really very fragile. All it takes is a windstorm, a flood, or a lightning bolt to do irreparable harm, not to mention the kind of damage a determined teenager can do. Cemeteries are vulnerable if they are not visited. My mission is to get people to go. The least I can do for the pleasure cemeteries have given me is to inspire and encourage other people to visit for themselves.