Storm Recovery Efforts 2020

(This information was updated on 9-16-2020. Please check back for future updates.)

We have nearly completed Phase 1 of our cleanup efforts which includes removal of large trees, dangerous handing limbs and addressing other major safety concerns. Our priority for all our cleanup efforts continues to be the safety of the community and our Associates. We continue to ask that you use caution if you are at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery, and if you need assistance, please visit the Funeral Home, or call 319-393-8000.

As we enter Phase 2, we have started the process of assessing damages to the buildings and beginning work with contractors to make necessary repairs. Additionally, we continue to remove small debris and damage in all gardens of the cemetery. Please understand that we may not be able to mow some areas of the cemetery due to the debris and damage that was incurred.

During Phase 2, we also will begin assessing damages to memorials and statuary in the cemetery. Generally, our plan is to attempt to visit each interment right and record the damage that has occurred. We then will determine if the memorial requires repair or replacement and attempt to contact a family member to notify what will be occurring. Please note that while we will make every attempt to contact a family member, we may not have current contact information and may be unable to reach someone.

Our annual Fall Cleanup will again take place on October 15, starting at 7:00 AM (weather permitting). We recognize that many decorations were lost due to the devastating storm, but if you still have floral tributes in place and would like to keep them, please remove them before Wednesday, October 14. To better accommodate the continued cleanup efforts, we kindly request that no further placements are made until after November 15. The time from October 15 to November 15 will allow our staff to continue cleaning smaller debris and assessing damages. As a reminder, the use of permanent vases is not permitted between October 15 and April 1.

Cedar Memorial extends heartfelt thanks to the community for their outpouring of support as we work to maintain the beauty and serenity of Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery.

(Information posted on 8-19-2020)

For over 90 years we have been honored to be a part of this great community that has yet again risen above to lend a helping hand to family, friends, neighbors, and strangers. During the 90 years we have served families, the 80+ acres of Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery has been the home of many beautiful tree specimens. We were even home to one of (if not the largest) Bald Cypress tree in Iowa. We are truly saddened by the damages that have occurred, but we know that with our continued care, that Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery will continue to be a place of beauty and serenity.

The August 10, 2020 derecho that produced winds in upwards 140 miles per hour in certain areas, resulted in catastrophic losses to the tree canopy at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery. This has created an unprecedented cleanup situation that we are working on with contractors to remedy in the coming weeks. The contractor that was selected is highly recognized in their industry for difficult tree cleanup situations in large areas. They have also assisted numerous cemeteries in major disaster situations and are familiar with the complex nature of a cleanup of this size and of the special considerations needed when assisting a cemetery.

Our priority for this cleanup is the safety of everyone. With that in mind, we are asking all community members to please refrain from entering the gardens of the cemetery during the approximate 4-week cleanup period that is set to begin on Monday, August 24, 2020. During this time, the contractors will be focused on the removal of hanging limbs and uprooted trees that are a danger to public safety. We also will have crews working to prioritize the removal of downed trees and debris in locations that require burial services as we continue to care for the families we are honored to serve.

Cedar Memorial fully recognizes the concerns that the community has related to the interment locations and memorial markers of their loved ones at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery. After we work to complete the initial debris removal, we will then move onto visiting memorial markers and statuary throughout the cemetery to assess damages. This stage of our restoration plan is going to take some time, and we do not have a scheduled completion date currently. However, please know that our Associates will be working diligently to ensure that every perpetual place of rest is assessed and cared for properly in the coming months.

We have received many inquiries about the condition of specific locations and markers in the cemetery. Due to the nature of the unsafe conditions of the cemetery, our response time to these inquiries is completely reliant upon the full cleanup of each area. Therefore, for those inquiring about location and memorial condition, please know we care and are trying to respond quickly while assuring the safety of our Associates, which will take some time.

As we all move forward from the historic derecho that occurred, we find it even more apparent that yet again our community has come together to support one another. We have not only found this in what is occurring in our community, but in the outpouring of support we have received from concerned citizens.

We thank you for your kindness and understanding as we all navigate this situation together.