Celebrating 90 Years

90 years ago – on March 29, 1929, Carl K. Linge, a Topeka car salesman turned cemeterian, opened a very different kind of cemetery in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Mr. Linge had been involved in the cemetery sales business in the Midwest serving as a sales contractor for a number of cemeteries in the region in the mid 1920’s.  Carl and three of his business associates founded what is today Lincoln Memorial Park in Lincoln, Nebraska.  In 1928, Carl investigated a prosperous community in Iowa called Cedar Rapids for his new kind of cemetery.  He had a burning desire to create a cemetery that would be unlike all others.  A place full of towering trees, singing birds, blooming flowers, splashing fountains, beautiful statuary, sweeping lawns and noble memorial architecture.  It was to be a place to celebrate life and life eternal.  It was called a park plan cemetery.  On March 29, 1929 Cedar Memorial Park was founded.

Dr. Hubert Eaton, founder of Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale, CA, one of the first grand park plan cemeteries of our nation, spoke of a powerful force that is just now starting to be understood.  Simply put it is the desire of each and every one of us to remember and to be remembered.  He refers to this force as the Memorial Impulse.  Cemeteries are not simply depositories of those who pass before us but rather, they are places where lives are commemorated - deaths are recorded - families are reunited - memories are made tangible and love is undisguised.  A cemetery is truly a history of the people of our community - a perpetual record of yesterday and a sanctuary of peace and quiet today. 

When Carl K. Linge founded Cedar Memorial Park he endeavored to create a cemetery that would be well cared for today, tomorrow and forever.  As guardians of our community’s heritage, it is our responsibility to maintain the dignity and reverence of this special place of final rest.  It is also our responsibility to maintain the perpetual care funds that ultimately provide the maintenance and administrative support for the cemetery park for perpetuity.  For three generations, Cedar Memorial Park has been dedicated to the prudent management of these very sacred care funds.  Today, Cedar Memorial Park maintains the largest perpetual care fund in the state of Iowa.  In addition, Cedar Memorial Park has been recognized by the International Cemetery Cremation and Funeral Association (ICCFA) as one of the premier memorial parks in the country.  And most recently, we received First Place in the Most Personalized Service/Memorial category and overall Grand Prize in the ICCFA 2018 Keeping It Personal (KIP) Awards for our Butterfly Blanket Program!

Our continued success reflects the diligent dedication of The Cedar Group Associates…past, present and future Associates.  Providing uniquely beautiful and innovative interment and service options with care, integrity and respect has become the hallmark of Cedar Associates.  We live, play and work in Iowa and consider it one of the finest places in the nation to do so. We put our heart where our mouth is and have contributed hundreds of volunteer hours to a wide variety of non-profit, community organizations. Our Associates sincere concern and deep commitment to the well-being of our friends and neighbors is reflected by this involvement.  The Cedar Group Associates are why our customers say “WOW…that was special!”

Today, The Cedar Group encompasses three progressive death care providers: Cedar Memorial, Iowa Cremation and Companions for Life.  Each entity possesses a well-defined mission of service for the families who place their trust in us.  Thanks to the vision of my grandfather 90 years ago and the entrepreneurial spirit of all Cedar Associates, The Cedar Group will continue to set the standard in cemetery, funeral and cremation service in Iowa for another 90 years!

Happy 90th Anniversary Cedar Memorial Park!

C. John Linge
Chairman and 3rd Generation Owner

Visit our History page to learn more about our 90 years of serving and supporting our community.


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