With the ever-growing popularity of cremations, the Wauseon Union Cemetery, recently added two free-standing 40-niche columbariums. The columbariums are an option for the storage of a loved one’s funeral urn.
All the niches in the cemetery’s first columbarium — installed near the cemetery office a decade ago — have been sold. Cemetery Sexton Keith Bechstein has gathered a list of 10 to 12 people who are waiting to purchase a niche. He plans on contacting those interested individuals.
According to the National Funeral Directors Association, cremation now accounts for just over 57 percent of all funerals in the United States with industry watchdogs reporting that by 2035 the cremation rate reach just under 80 percent. Some of the reasons for the growing popularity for cremations are because they more affordable than traditional burials which can require embalming, caskets, vaults, a burial plot, head or footstone and concrete base. Proponents to the process also say they require less land.
In November 2020, the cemetery trustees ordered two additional units. Delivery had been delayed because of shipping challenges. The new units were purchased from Delphos Granite Works and installed earlier this month. Each unit weighs 5,000 pounds and contains 40 spaces.