Fall 2011 Time Marches On When I was a young boy I would long for the school year to give way to summer, the beginning of the Little League season and of course Christmas morning. On more than one occasion I can remember wishing time would speed up so much that the greatly anticipated day would arrive when I awoke the next morning. Naturally when my mother or dad heard my thoughts come spewing out of my mouth, they would warn me not to wish my life away. A lot of water has gone under the bridge since then but I still find myself doing essentially the same thing. As I was writing this article I looked at the calendar and noticed that there are 101 days left in 2011. Now if you’re one of those people that think the glass is half full, you might say thank goodness, we still have three more months left in the year. On the other hand, if you’re one of the glass half empty folks, you might be thinking, “Where did the year go?” Regardless of which school of thought you’re from, once again I found myself thinking about dates well into 2012. I wasn’t wishing my life away but I sure was thinking. Most of my thoughts revolved around work issues like conventions, training classes and the upcoming AMA Technology Tour. The AMA Tour is the first week of October, just right around the corner. The next monument convention is the Tennessee/Kentucky, the third week in October. Then before you know it, it will be mid January and time to go to Baltimore for the Mid-Atlantic Convention. Blink an eye and it will be late February and time for the joint convention between MBNA and the California/Pacific Northwest group. Heck I haven’t even bought a Halloween costume yet and I’m thinking about all of this stuff that is beyond Valentine’s Day 2012. There is one event that will take place in my personal life in 2011 that I am greatly anticipating. My oldest son, Elliott, will be graduating from the University of Georgia after this semester. For that I am both excited and proud! GO DAWGS! As I think about what lies ahead, I look with anticipation of a better tomorrow. The last several years have not been kind to our industry or our country. Things may not be as bright today as we would like, but there’s always hope. Can you imagine how your forefathers must have felt when they were having to do so much with so little. Hurray for hard work and perseverance! In keeping with the theme of looking ahead, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day aren’t THAT far away. As these holidays begin, let us all be thankful for the brave men and women that put their lives on the line each day so we can live free. Free, in a country where “In God We Trust” is still the most important part of our core. And as we bring in the new year, let us hope and pray that 2012 will bring prosperity to the United States and good fortune to its citizens! Test out our new Quick Response Code! We have been noticing these Quick Response “QR” Codes showing up in many aspects of our everyday lives, and now they are even in the monument industry. On a Smartphone, you can download an application to read these codes. Once the application is downloaded, all you have to do is take a photo of the code and it will send you to our website. Keep your eyes peeled as we integrate these QR Codes into services for our members. Be sure to find and ‘like’ our new page on Facebook. The social networking tool is a great way to keep everyone up to date on the happenings in Elberton. Craig Willis Darica Trucking Company, Inc. The Cost of Trucking Rises with Expenses Our lives are based around transportation. Whether we are having something delivered or just getting from point A to B, we are constantly dependent on the cost of transportation as a factor in our monthly expenses. Over the last few years, we have watched as the cost of fuel has skyrocketed to prices we never dreamed of, yet we still must rely on methods of transportation to function. This is no different in the granite industry. As a trucking company, we know that you rely on us to deliver your goods, but we also realize that with such a shaky economy, it is easy to question why your freight bill may be more expensive than in the past. The price of fuel is the most obvious way that the cost of shipping has increased. In 2011, the average price of fuel in Georgia has teetered close to $4.00. In 2001, the average price barely exceeded $1.50. This is a price increase of over 160% over the last 10 years. The government allows us to charge a fuel surcharge, which fluctuates with the cost of fuel, in the form of a percentage of the total bill. We always keep our fuel surcharge at a lower rate than that which the government allows. Another major factor is the cost of tires. On average, in 2011, a tire for an 18-wheeler costs over $500, whereas in years past, tires cost approximately $300. Last year, one of our trucks ran 153,198 miles. If you figure that steer tires average 120,000 miles and the drive tires average 280,000 miles, we normally replace the steer tires once a year, and replace the drive tires every other year on all 14 of our trucks. An over $200 increase in price, multiplied by the number of tires per truck, and we are spending an extra $42,000 every two years replacing the tires on the trucks only. This does not even count our 32 trailers. We also have to consider the cost of making our trucks more environmentally friendly. The EPA has tightened the reins on emission standards in all vehicles, including our trucks. In the models after 2008, a diesel particulate filter, also known as a DPF, has been installed to remove the diesel matter and soot from the fuel. These filters will remove 85% of the soot from the emissions, but they lower our fuel mileage. We are experiencing a larger fuel bill, but also a higher price on new trucks to cover the cost of the new technology. The price of a new truck has increased on average $15,000 from emissions control alone. On top of these three major costs, we must consider labor costs, wages and insurance increases as large expenses in the trucking industry. Our company has tried to keep our business running while always attempting to keep the freight costs as low as possible for our customers. Everyone in our industry is fighting an uphill battle with the costs of production rising, but we are trying to balance our price increases as much as we can. The staff of Darica knows that you rely on us to keep your business running, and we hope you understand that, in spite of the increases in our expenses, we are working to keep your costs low. EGA welcomes the new Trustees to the Board The Elberton Granite Association, Inc. elected the newest board members at the Annual Meeting on June 16, 2011. Incoming trustees are: Keith Harper of Harper’s Quarry, Inc., Greg Ruff of River Edge Granite Company, Inc., and Jerry King of King’s Monuments, Inc. John Campbell of Dixie Granite Company, Inc., was re-elected president and is serving his second term. George Oglesby, III, of Keystone Memorials, Inc., was elected vice president of the Association and Rose Walker of Walker Granite Company, Inc., is serving as this year’s treasurer. Bottom Row: Mark Hill, Hillcrest Granite Company, Inc., Treasurer Rose Walker, Walker Granite Company, Inc., President John Campbell, Dixie Granite Company, Inc. Center Row: Keith Harper, Harper’s Quarry, Inc., Greg Ruff, River Edge Granite Company, Inc., David Giannoni, Rome Granite, Inc., Executive Vice President Doy Johnson. Back Row: Tony Mills, L&M Granite Company, LLC, Jerry King, King’s Monument, Inc., Vice President George Oglesby, III, Keystone Memorials, Inc. EGA also welcomed the newest members at the Annual Meeting by presenting them with membership plaques. Left: Rita and Mike Maxwell of Double M Maintenance, LLC Right: Kevin Vickery and Carl Pless of KC Granite, Inc. EGA Hosts Sister City Students The group visited the Georgia Guidestones during their tour. Front: Nanami Kiuchi, Ayaka Baba, Misaki Baba, Risa Ando, Chaperone Ayako Shiramoto. Back: Bill Hood of EGA, Tom Evans of the Committee, Riichi Tsurumi and Allen Lee, EGA Museum Curator. F ive students and one chaperone visited the Elberton Granite Association from Mure-Cho, Japan during the 2011 Sister City Exchange Program. The students lived in Elberton with a host family for approximately two weeks. Activities this year included horseback riding, a trip to Stone Mountain, and pool parties. The students, along with Tom Evans of the Sister City Committee, Bill Hood and Kellyn Willis, both of EGA, and Officer Allen Lee toured the local granite industry, learning the ins and outs of our industry. Mure-Cho is a town known for its stone quarries, so there are similarities and differences in the two cities and local economies. First stop on the trip was to Keystone Granite Company, Inc., to view a working quarry. The popular Georgia Guidestones were next on the agenda, followed by a tour of the manufacturing plant of Keystone Memorials, Inc. EGA hosted a luncheon for the students, host families and the Sister City Committee after the tour. Left: Misaki Baba watches as the stone is prepared for sandblasting. Top Left: Allen Lee explains the museum displays. Top right: Nanami watches carefully at Keystone. Bottom left: The group poses in front of the museum. Bottom right: The students read about the Georgia Guidestones. Central Granite purchases stencil cutter from Granite Sales and Supply Granite Sales and Supply Corporation has provided a new Ana Graph Flatbed Monument Cutter to Central Granite Company, Inc. This is the first of its kind at the Central plant. “We have had problems with our older cutter so we purchased this as a back up. We’ve been cutting most of our stencil on the new one,” commented Jake Smith of Central. The Ana Graph Flatbed Cutter eliminates the need for perforated stencil and provides ease of operation with increased speed. The system is compatible with all graphic software using HPGL format. For more information, contact Granite Sales and Supply. Johnson Machine Shop designs new Gantry Saw Johnson Machine Shop recently built a new design of Gantry diamond saw for limestone quarries. Steve Johnson, owner of Johnson Machine, designed the machine to rest on a concrete wall instead of the floor of the quarry. This eliminates any movement caused by erosion. The saw has a 6ft. blade and will make a complete cut at one time. There is a 40-ft. rail on either side. “It’s a very easy saw to operate,” Steve said. “We’ve made similar saws, but nothing exactly like this.” For more information on the saw, contact Steve at Johnson Machine Shop. Wilson Industrial equips new manufacturing plant Wilson Industrial Electric has installed new equipment in a manufacturing plant soon to open in the Elberton Granite District. The first piece installed was a 7ft. single strand wire saw. The saw is capable of sawing a block up to 7ft. It features a new step-down circuit developed by owner Ray Wilson and his son Matt. The circuit enables the wire saw to cut at a much faster speed than its competitors. The saw is able to cut various types of stone including granite, sandstone, marble, quartz and limestone. It runs more efficiently than other saws designed by other manufacturers, making it a frontrunner in the slabbing industry. The second piece of equipment installed was an automatic polishing mill, fully-integrated so polishing heads can be changed without an employee present. The polisher is equipped with a calibration stage that allows it to polish natural stone as well as man-made stone. It has multiple heads with the capability to run up to seven stages with the ability to change heads and polish without an employee present. The time and money saved is considerable and it allows the operator to do other tasks while it completes the process. Wilson has equipped the new plant with the top-of-the-line materials, ensuring them a jump start in the industry. Lexington Blue Granite Company, Inc., still running strong after many years Located on Monumental Drive in the heart of the thriving granite industry, Lexington Blue Granite Company, Inc., has a long history, starting in 1955. The business started as Service Blue Granite Company by Mrs. Raymond Miller and Mr. Pete Tate. It was soon sold to a man from Lexington, Ky. Since she retained ownership of Service Quarry, Mrs. Miller would not let the buyer keep the name Service Granite. Instead, he used the name of his hometown as the basis of the current moniker. After more changes of ownership, the business landed in the hands of Mrs. Miller’s daughter, Carolyn, who had worked in the office for her mother when she was not teaching school. Carolyn took over her mother’s portion of the business and now shares ownership with Richard Griggs. Richard had been working as a stonecutter at the plant when he decided to buy in with Carolyn. The two have been running the successful granite company since 1989. Their main plant is located in the original building, but since taking over, Carolyn and Richard have made significant expansions. They now own a 15 acre plot off of Highway 17 housing their two diamond saws. Here, the blocks from the quarry are stored and sawed. These diamond saws were some of the first of their kind in operation in Elberton. The next big purchase was the old Elberton Granite Finishing Company building; their main plant was not large enough to handle their work load, so they now house their sandblasting division at the plant on Tate Street Extension. They have also added an upstairs to their office building for their drafting department. The main source of income for Lexington Blue is cemetery memorials, with 90% of their products being made from Elberton granite. They also produce war memorials and signs. “We have been very fortunate to produce a good many war memorial,” Carolyn comments. “Cemetery memorials are our ‘bread and butter’, but the war memorials are like icing on the cake.” Two of their largest war memorials they’ve ever produced and are being built now - one will be set in North Carolina and the other in Tennessee. Lexington Blue’s main clientele resides in the southeastern part of the country. “We have customers up north, but we mainly deal down here in the sunny south,” Carolyn comments. “We try to treat our retail dealers right and help them with any problems they are having.” And help they do; Richard has been known to hop in the truck, drive to the site and help with any setting problems if he is needed. He and Carolyn have taken over an already strong granite business, but by the looks of it, they are steadily growing with each project. Magnificent details in a McNeel Classic Nestled atop a sloping hill in a corner of the vast Riverside Cemetery in Macon, Ga., the beautiful memorial honoring the Mitchell family is an elite example of hard work and craftsmanship. Produced by J&L Enterprises, Inc., the memorial is an adaptation of a McNeel design, which was chosen by Mrs. John Thomas Mitchell for her family memorial. The monument was ordered from Southern Granite & Marble Company in Macon. J&L has been a long-time associate with SGMCo. Co-owner Braxton Markert and design artist Barbara Pierce collaborated to modify and scale the Gothic steele, which features complex molds and intricate carvings. According to Terry Fortson of J&L, these delicate carvings and details made for a complicated memorial. “It probably took us six to eight months to finish. Eighty percent of the details were done by hand,” he commented. “In the 25 years I’ve been here, this is probably the most challenging monument we’ve made.” The memorial has a total height of 8-2. The tablet measures 3-2 x 1-2 x 6-8. It stands on a 3-10 x 1-8 x 0-8 sub base and a 5-2 x 2-10 x 0-10 base. All three pieces are crafted from J&L Select Blue granite and all have a velvet finish. Al measurements and specifications were given to J&L by Braxton and Barbara and were carried out by Terry and his team to perfect each mold so that the memorial would balance correctly. Other slight changes were made, such as the style of the cross and the lettering. Mrs. Mitchell wanted a traditional look with a Christian influence, and she wanted the memorial to “make a statement”. Mr. Mitchell’s interment is marked with a granite ledger using molds that are in keeping with the base details of the monument. The staff of J&L spent countless hours working on the Mitchell family memorial, and the hard work in evident in the finished product. The Mitchell monument is a striking addition to the cemetery and will be attracting visitors for years to come. The original sketch featured in the McNeel Design book. “In the 25 years I’ve been here, this is probably the most challenging monument we’ve made.” Terry Fortson, J&L Enterprises J&B Granite Company, LLC, continues the family traditions Family businesses are a long-running tradition in the Elberton granite industry. It is always easy to find a story about someone whose father, grandfather and great-grandfather all worked in the same manufacturing plant. But, even with the sentimental feelings behind these stories, not many are historical events. Mark and Tammy Parham, owners of J&B Granite Company, LLC., have just that - Tammy, who knows her way around a plant, was taught everything she knows by her mother, Mary Woodall, who was the industry’s first ever female stonecutter. Talk about a great teacher. J&B Granite was started in the late 1960s by Frank Jenkins and Jim Burdette. Jimmy and Mary Woodall purchased the plant in 1987 and brought along their daughter, Tammy and their son-in-law, Mark. Mark is a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to the plant - he can run any piece of machinery in the plant. Tammy also has her fair share of hands-on training in the plant; when working for her parents, she learned to operate the diamond saws and cranes. Mark and Tammy purchased the business from her parents in 1997 and it still remains at the original location on Jenkins Road. Since the business was opened, they have experienced numerous expansions. A 30ft. building was added to house a new 9ft. saw, an 11ft. 6in. saw and an automatic top polisher. The office building was purchased in 2000. The Parhams have recently purchased a quarry and are working diligently to get the operation off the ground. The fully-equipped plant is used mainly for cemetery monuments and signs for cemeteries, but they also do custom work for local facilities. They have the equipment and ability to produce any special tops on monuments as well as custom sawing and polishing. With 10 employees at the plant and five more at the quarry, J&B is stocked with the man-power and equipment to produce anything the customer may order. Today, Mark and Tammy run the company with their oldest son, Duane, working as plant foreman and their youngest son, Dale, working in the quarry. It seems that they carry this idea of a family business through to their customers, too, treating them as a member of the family. “We try to keep our customers happy. We are always available to them. They have my home number, my cell number and I have the same with them,” Tammy said. “If we don’t have loyal customers, we don’t have anything.” Southern Granite produces elegant design Southern Granite Company, Inc., created this regal memorial for the Van Valer family to rest in the Greenland Cemetery in Franklin, Ind. Tim Stakelbeck of Franklin Monument Company, Inc., worked closely with the family on the design. His first idea was a larger monument that the family decided to scale down. It features symbols for law and medicine, representing the couple’s occupations. It also has the symbol for marriage with their wedding date and the names of their four children on the back. The center tablet stands 3-0 x 0-6 x 1-8, polished four. It is topped with a serpentine cap, all polished measuring 4-8 x 0-8 x 0-8. The fluted columns are also all polished and stand 0-6 x 0-6 x 1-8. It rests on a 5-4 x 0-10 x 0-4, all polished subbase. The base has a polished flat top with the balance rock pitched and measures 5-10 x 1-2 x 0-6. It is finished with two all polished vases on each side standing 0-4 x 0-4 x 0-10. Eagle creates unique details on American Black American Black granite is a beautiful canvas for this intricate monument by Eagle Granite Company, Inc. Ron Bartholomew of Wake Monument Company in Rolesville, N.C., says the design was based on a memorial in one of his catalogs. “We found a monument with this shape and the same carving details which the family really liked,” he said. The beautiful stone shows off the details of the memorial’s shape. “It’s nice to have a domestically-quarried black stone to offer, particularly one with so much character,” Ron comments. The tablet measures 4-0 x 0-8 x 2-4, polish two with the balance rock pitched. It features the shell pitch design, crafted by Eagle’s stonecutters. It sits on a base, 5-0 x 1-2 x 0-8, with a polished top and the balance rock pitched. The Blalock memorial rests in the Maplewood Cemetery in Durham, N.C. Keystone Memorials makes a man’s favorite song come to life Inspired by personal details such as Mr. Warren’s favorite song and the color of his eyes, this beautiful monument was manufactured by Keystone Memorials, Inc., and designed by Cole Brown of Brookhaven Monument Company. The unique design of the memorial originated from Mr. Warren’s favorite song, “The House of the Rising Sun.” Cole took this idea and ran with it. “I chose a design that called for the rooftop shape, then featured a core hole for the sun and the star burst carving techniques like sun rays,” he commented. Mr. Warren’s daughters chose the Blue Pearl granite as the primary material because it reminded them of their father’s eyes. The polished five tablet stands at 2-2 x 0-6 x 3-6 on a steeled five sub-base measuring 2-10 x 0-10 x 0-6. The base, 3-6 x 1-0 x 0-6, has a polished flat top with the Dixie Granite fabricates beautiful family memorial Using a sketch from the Loving Memories collection from Design Mart, Dixie Granite Company, Inc., manufactured this unique memorial to rest in the Wolfe family cemetery in Sneedville, Tenn. Jennifer Roe of Greene County Monument Company worked with the family to customize the original design. The wings were slightly modified for size reasons, and the center vase was changed from a round vase to a tapered style. The new tapered vase looked a little plain, so Jennifer suggested they etch a photo. “They brought in this photo that had been taken at a family reunion and it was perfect. It almost looks like they are walking home together,” Jennifer comments. Each wing measures 2-4 x 0-8 x 2-4, polished two with the balance steeled. They rest on a base, 6-0 x 1-2 x 0-8, with a polished top and a polished margin. In the center, a Jet Black vase stands at 0-8 x 0-6 x 0-10 on an all-steeled pedestal measuring 1-10 x 0-10 x 0-6. Jennifer says the family “absolutely loves” the final product. Baston Monuments produces grand memorial A massive memorial produced by Baston Monuments, Inc., is a beautiful addition to the New Clay Cemetery in Clay, Ky. Todd Vanover of Vanover Monument Company worked closely with the Parker family for months to perfect their design. The family studied design books and traveled from cemetery to cemetery in search of the perfect monument. The chosen design was found in a large cemetery in Indiana. After a few modifications, the Parker family now has a memorial that looks exactly as they’d hoped. The base of the memorial measures 12-0 x 1-8 x 1-0, large enough to cover the center of their family’s 24’ lot. The base has a polished top with a 2” polished margin and the balance rock pitched. The center tablet, 2-10 x 0-10 x 5-6, is all polished with an exaggerated serpentine top. Two all polished wings flank either side, measuring 3-0 x 0-8 x 2-10. The vases stand 0-10 x 0-8 x 1-0 and are all polished. Southern Mausoleums recreates artist’s memorial Riverside Cemetery in Asheville, N.C., is the resting place of many famous individuals such authors, Confederate generals and artists, such as Kenneth Noland, world-renowned contemporary American artist and the favorite artist of Ms. Dori Martin. When Ms. Martin saw Noland’s mausoleum, she immediately knew she wanted a replica of his memorial for her plot. Southern Mausoleums, Inc., worked with Whitmire Monument Company to convert a standard SMI design into a smaller version of Noland’s mausoleum. The six-crypt mausoleum stands over 9’ tall and is made of all polished Keystone Blue granite. It features a slight gable roof and a detailed bronze door. Granite stairs and a retaining wall were also built to secure the mausoleum on the steep lot. Central Granite Company honors Iowa’s veterans The American Legion of Walcott, Iowa, commissioned a stunning American Black monument to honor the city’s veterans at the Welcoming Park in the center of Walcott. Central Granite Company, Inc., produced the monument for Iowa Memorial Granite Company in Muscatine, Iowa. Polly Geurink of Iowa Memorial used a monument in their showroom to design the unique piece. “We had a monument on display with the etching of an eagle holding the American flag. Although the display memorial had an apex top, the size was what the Committee wanted. I thought the exaggerated half serpentine top would be the perfect fit,” she commented. The center tablet of the monument measures 5-6 x 0-6 x 4-6. It is all polished in the center with steeled ends to better emphasize the emblems of each military branch. It rests on a 6-6 x 1-2 x 0-4 base with a polished top and the balance rock pitched. All etchings were done by Central Granite. The Committee was proud to use the American Black granite, quarried in Pennsylvania, to honor the veterans. Keystone Memorials, Inc. creates stunning base for bronze soldier Johnny Price of Found and Sons contacted Keystone Memorials, Inc., to create a large platform for a bronze statue of a soldier to stand in the Wine Street Memorial Park in Culpeper, Va. In 2008, Culpeper’s Town Council formed the Veterans Recognition Committee to honor those citizens lost in World War II and the Korean War. Designs were submitted to the VRC through a design competition and a winning design was chosen in November of that year. Local artist Tad Butler’s design was chosen, and Jim Brothers of Lawrence, Ks., a nationally known sculptor, was commissioned to create an iconic statue to rest atop a granite base. The large Ebony Mist block, quarried from just 13 miles away, was donated to the project by Tony Ramos of Georgia Stone Industries, Inc. The all-polished base measures 6-0 x 6-0 x 5-0, polished five. The sides and back of the base feature famous quotes from past Presidents. The back has a quote from President Franklin D. Roosevelt during his “Prayer to the Nation” D-Day speech in 1944; one side has a quote from President Harry Truman after Japan signed a surrender during WWII in 1945; the other side features a quote from President Dwight Eisenhower announcing the signing of the Korean Armistice in 1953. On the front of the base, the names of Culpeper County citizens killed in WWII and the Korean War are listed inside an outline of Culpeper County. A dedication ceremony was held June 18, 2011, with veterans and citizens in attendance. Hillcrest Granite Company pays tribute to 86th Blackhawk Infantry Division A life-size bronze statue honoring the 86th Blackhawk Infantry Division stands on a Flash Black granite base in Camp San Luis Obispo, California. The 86th Division, nicknamed the “Kids Division” was reactivated in late 1942 after serving in WWII. Elberton native Floyd Latham was a member of the division. The Privates and PFC’s were transferred out of the 86th, and the Division was filled with young replacements from the Air Force and ASTP, garnering the nickname the “Kids Division.” Before their first tour of duty in the Pacific Theater, the Division was stationed for training in Camp San Luis Obispo. They fought together in the Pacific Theater, through Europe, then were shipped back to the Philippines at the end of the war. In 1946, the majority of the men were discharged. Years later, the members of the 86th Division formed an association to meet once a year and keep close contact with their Brothers in Arms. Over time, the members found it harder and harder to travel, so the association decided to deactivate in 2009. To properly honor the association and its members, the group returned to Camp San Luis Obispo to dedicate the life-size statue of an 86th Division member. Dick Behrends, the Association’s president for its last six years, sculpted the Infantryman. It rests on an all-polished Flash Black base, measuring 4-0 x 3-3 x 2-3, manufactured by Hillcrest Granite Company, Inc. Italdiamant USA, Inc., brings Italian craftsmanship to Elberton Italdiamant USA, established in 1986, is the direct US branch of Italdiamant Italy, a leading company in diamond tooling since 1975. The business is located at 1035 Old Middleton Rd in Elberton, GA. The building consisting of 6000 sq ft. is fully stocked with diamond tooling for all natural and man-made stones and accomodates machinery for servicing their products. Adriano Soso came from Italy with 20+ years of experience in the stone industry. He attends conventions and visits with their many customers worldwide. He also emphazises that all Italdiamant products are “nickel free”. Celebrating Sixty Years On June 16, 2011, the Elberton Granite Association proudly celebrated our 60th Anniversary at the Annual Meeting held at the Elberton Civic Center. Forty-one EGA member-firms were represented, along with special guests including past EGA presidents, County Commissioners, City Councilmen, Chamber of Commerce members and past EGA employees. The guests enjoyed good food and conversations with old friends and co-workers. The evening started with a welcome from President John Campbell and recognition of special guests by Executive Vice President Doy Johnson. A memorial service was held in honor of those EGA members who had passed since the 2010 meeting. Bill Hood of EGA then recognized the newest members of the Association and presented them with their membership plaques. President Campbell, Executive Vice President Johnson and Treasurer Trudy King gave reports on the state of the Association. The meeting was also the site to vote in the new trustees. The three men joining the Board of Trustees are Keith Harper of Harper’s Quarry, Inc., Jerry King of King’s Monument Company, Inc., and Greg Ruff of River Edge Granite Company, Inc. All three gentlemen have served on the Board of Trustees in the past and we look forward to having them back to share their ideas for the Association. We also thanked three departing trustees for their continued service to EGA – Michael Baston of Baston Monuments, Inc., Trudy King of King’s Monument Company, Inc., and Bill Simmons of Sweet City Quarries, Inc., all finished their terms on the Board. Former Executive Vice Presidents Bill Kelly and Tom Robinson along with former Promotional Specialist Hudson Cone entertained the crowd with stories about the Association over the last 60 years. A video of EGA’s history was also shown as the crowd ate and mingled. EGA would like to thank all of our members, past presidents, past employees and the community for helping us make this night so special. We are so proud to celebrate this milestone! Top left: Anthony Adams of Gold Eagle Quarries, Inc., Bo, Mike and Pat Rutherford of Pyramid Stone Industries, Inc. Top Center: John McLanahan and his son of Elberton Granite Industries, Inc., Keith Harper of Harper’s Quarry, Inc., Former EGA Staffer Hudson Cone, Former EGA Staffer George Gaines. Top Right: Wilton and Jessie Slay of Trinity Machine Shop, Inc., Rita and Mike Maxwell of Double M Maintenance, Hal Reynolds of Reynolds Marble and Granite Company. Bottom left: Doy Johnson passes on a plaque to president John Campbell. Bottom Center: The Simmons family gathers at the meeting - seated, Mr. Willie Simmons. Standing, Josh Simmons, Annie Lee Simmons, Mike Simmons, and Kim Simmons of Supreme Granite Company, Inc., and Bill Simmons of Sweet City Quarries. Bottom right: Linda and Tom Robinson pose for a photo after the meeting. Top left: Former Executive Vice President Tom Robinson speaks to the group. Top right: Former Executive Vice President Bill Kelly and his wife, Frances, pose for a picture. Left: Katherine and Joe Fernandez of Design Mart, LLC, and James Turner of Bicknell Supply Company. Right: Former Promotional Specialist Hudson Cone entertains the crowd with his famous stories. Bottom left: Renee Giannoni of Rome Granite, Inc., Lisa McGarity of Harmony Blue Granite Company, Inc. James Walters of Eagle Granite Company, Inc., Jeff and Brandon Boyd of Boyd Granite Company, Inc. Bottom right: Ronnie Brown of Miles Supply of Elberton, Inc., and Gerald Moon of G.B. Moon Granite Memorials, Inc. 1: Former EGA Staffer Hudson Cone poses with former Treasurer Trudy King of King’s Monument Company, Inc.; 2: _____Rick Burton, Janet and Johnny Burton, Julie and Brad Burton of Burton Monuments, Inc. 3: Paul Albertson of Henry and Henry, Inc., Allen Herndon of Welch’s Granite Company, Inc., and Chuck Martin of Martin Granite Company; 4: Gerald Moon of G.B. Moon Granite Memorials, Inc., and Mike Beri of Bicknell Supply Company; 5: Ann, Lamar, Luke, Rhett, Marty and Rose Walker of Walker Granite Company, Inc. 6: Chamber of Commerce Chairman Daniel Graves and Tom Oglesby of Keystone Memorials, Inc.; 7: Doy Johnson gives the Annual Report of the Association; 8: Past and Present EGA Staffers pose for a photo. Seated: Tom Robinson, Bill and Frances Kelly, Hudson Cone. Standing: Doy Johnson, Frankie Dove, Susan Dixon, James Hall, Stockton Jones, Elizabeth Slay, Lisa Bucksot, Kellyn Willis and Bill Hood. Above: Past Board of Trustee members were invited to congregate for a photo. Seated: Calvin Hill, Rose Walker, Lamar Walker, Jim Welch, Shirley McNeeley, Horace Harper, Willie Simmons, George Gaines. Standing middle: Bill Simmons, Michael Baston, Trudy King, John Campbell, Tom Oglesby, Marty Walker. Standing back: David Giannoni, John McLanahan, Stanley Mills, Keith Harper, Mark Hill, Jerry King, Harold Reynolds, Bob Paul and George Oglesby, III. Below: Past Presidents were invited as special guests to the meting. Seated: John McLanahan, Keith Harper, Shirley McNeeley, Horace Harper, Willie Simmons, George Gaines. Standing: Bob Paul, John Campbell, Jerry King, Tom Oglesby, Marty Walker and George Oglesby, III. A fallen hero honored by Rome Granite, Inc. On March 22, 2011, Athens, Ga., and the surrounding communities lost a true hero when Senior Police Officer Elmer “Buddy” Christian of the Athens-Clarke County Police Department was killed in the line of duty. SPO Christian was responding to a car-jacking incident where another officer, SPO Tony Howard, had been shot and wounded at the scene. SPO Christian lived in Hull, Ga., a small community less than ten miles from Athens. He was an active member of Hull Baptist Church where he served as a deacon, Sunday school teacher, worked closely with the Awana children’s program and managed the church’s sound system. After his untimely death, the members of his Sunday School class worked together to design a monument to rest outside of his beloved church. A member of the class contacted Rome Granite, Inc., with the idea of the monument, a simple piece with an etching of Buddy’s badge. With the enormous amount of media coverage, the staff of Rome was familiar with Officer Christian’s story and offered to donate the monument. The slant, made of Medium Blue granite measures 2-0 x 0-10 x 1-4. It is set near the entrance of the church at the base of their LED sign. Buddy was a big part of the project to purchase the LED sign for the church, so this was the perfect place for the monument. A heartfelt, emotional dedication was held during the Sunday morning service on July 10, 2011. Left: Buddy’s mother admires the memorial for the first time. Center: Buddy’s family poses at the memorial. Right: A close up of the etching of Buddy’s badge. Mrs. Janet C. Carrington Consolidated Granite Company, Inc. Mrs. Janet C. Carrington, 86, of 1159 Hartwell Highway, Elberton,Ga., passed away peacefully at Athens Regional Medical Center, Saturday morning, July 23, 2011. She was born in Fairfield, SC to the late Thomas Bailey Crowder and Sallie Coleman Crowder. Mrs. Carrington was a member of the Elberton First Baptist Church. She loved spending time with her family. Her memory will forever be treasured by her family and friends. Mrs. Carrington was the former owner of Consolidated Granite Company, Inc. Mrs. Carrington is survived by her children, James “Bud” Carrington, Judy (Neal) Dixon of Elberton, Ga.; grandchildren, Renee (Kevin) Hunt, Yvette (Greg) Sanders, Mark (Laura) Carrington, Kelly Jordan, all of Elberton, Teaneal (Chan) Brown of Lilburn, Ga., Josh (Katie) Carrington of Elberton, Ga.; great-grandchildren, Abby Jordan, Jackson Jordan, Avery Hunt, Cade Brown, Jude Sanders, Jamie Carrington and Beckett Brown, sister-in-law: Mrs. Olin Ellis of Iva, SC. She was preceded in death by her husband Thomas J. Carrington and a great-grandson; Thomas Candler Jordan. A service to celebrate Mrs. Carrington’s life was held Tuesday, July 26, at 12:00 noon at Hicks Funeral Home Chapel, with Rev. Gary Purvis officiating. Visitation for family and friends was held Tuesday, July 26, at 11:00 a.m. prior to the service. Interment was held e at Elmhurst Cemetery. Mrs. Patricia Wiles Wiles Granite Company, Inc. Mrs. Patricia Ann Miller Wiles, 62, of 376 Paoli Road, Carlton, Ga., passed away peacefully at her home, Thursday, July 28, 2011. Mrs. Wiles was born in Walton Co., Ga., to the late Cleophias Miller and Genie Annelle Sims Miller. She is survived by her husband, Harold Danny Wiles, daughter; Kelli (Marty) Tate, grandson; Christopher Tate and sister Gail (Douglas) Dobbs of Monroe, Ga. Numerous nieces and nephews also survive. Mrs. Wiles was preceded in death by her grandson; Brantley Tate, brother; Gerald Miller; and nephew; Wade Dobbs. She was co-owner of Wiles Granite Company, Inc. A service to celebrate Mrs. Wiles’ life was held Sunday, July 31, at 2:00p.m. at Hicks Funeral Home Chapel. Visitation of family and friends was held Saturday, July 30 from 6:00p.m. to 8:00p.m. Interment was held at Forest Hill Memorial Park. Mrs. Josephine Fortson Oglesby Keystone Granite Company, Inc. Mrs. Josephine Fortson Oglesby, 96, of 1009 Hartwell Highway passed away at her home, Friday, September 2, 2011, with her family at her side. She was a former school teacher employed by the Winterville School System. Mrs. Oglesby, fondly known as Miss Josephine, was a long time active member of First Baptist Church. She was also a former owner of Keystone Granite Company, Inc., in Elberton. Mrs. Oglesby is survived by her children Ethel Horton of St. Simons, Marcia (Bill) Esch of Atlanta, Tom (Elaine) Oglesby of Elberton; grandchildren Michelle (Bruce) Green, George (Tina) Oglesby, III, Laura (Jesse) Hernandez, Ross (Amy) Oglesby, Katherine (Sean) Purvis, and Michael Horton. She was preceded in death by her parents and husband, George T. Oglesby, Sr. A service to celebrate Mrs. Oglesby’s life was held Sunday, September 4, 2011, at First Baptist Church, Elberton. Gary Purvis and Ken Whitfield officiated. Memorial contributions may be made to The Shepherd’s Care or First Baptist Church, 132 Heard Street, Elberton, Georgia, 30635. Mr. Ted Elder Sims Blue Ribbon Quarries, Inc. Ted Elder Sims, age 64, of Winder, died on September 9, 2011. He was born in Oconee County on November 4, 1946 to the late James Harris Sims and the late Celia Breedlove Sims. He is the former owner of Blue Ribbon Quarries in Elberton. Mr. Sims was survived by his wife, Sara Jo Sims of Winder; son and daughter-in-law, Mark and Amy Sims of Monroe; daughter and son-in-law, Angie and Steve Locke of Winder; brother and sister-in-law, James and Mary Ann Sims of Monroe; sister, Cathy Sims of Monroe; mother-in-law, Willie Sue Wilson of Bethlehem; grandchildren, Courtney Locke, Ashley Locke, Anna Grace Sims; several nieces and nephews. In addition to flowers, donations can be made to St. Mary’s Hospice House, P.O. Box 6588, Athens, GA 30604. Funeral Services were held on Monday, September 12, 2011 at Hebron Christian Church with the Rev. Marion Prather, and Pastor Gordon Griffin officiating. Interment followed at Hebron Christian Church Cemetery. Florida Monument Builders Association Annual Convention June 23- 26, 2011 Orlando, FL The Florida Monument Builders Association held its Annual Convention at the Doubletree Hotel in Orlando, FL. The convention was a big success with a strong attendance and great meetings. The convention-goers spent time with the vendors as well as caught up on their Association news. Larry Oxenham gave an interesting presentation on wealth management and estate planning. Overall the show was great, and we’ve already got our calendars marked for next year’s show. Roger Wallace, Wallace Granite Sales, Scott and Gena Harward, Ocala, FL, Charlie Charles, Lake City, FL, Bryan Stephenson, Leesburg, FL, Rhonda and Jim Tramonte, Ocoee, FL Kevin Cantrell, Palm Harbor, FL, Kay and Jonathan Rhodes, Quality Monument Sales, Inc., Jamie Hicks, Sebastian, FL, Marcus and Angie Bonds and their children, Lexi and Branson, Quality Monument Sales, Inc. Monument Builders of the Southwest and the Louisiana - Mississippi Monument Builders Association Joint Convention June 23- 26, 2011 Beaumont, Texas For the second consecutive year, the Louisiana/Mississippi Monument Builders and the Monument Builders of the Southwest have met and held a joint annual convention. Like last year in Many, LA this year’s turnout in Beaumont, TX was exceptional. The accommodations were very good, the educational presentations were great and the exhibit hall was filled with wholesalers and retailers. The word is that these two groups will try to make the joint convention a regular event. Great convention folks! We will look forward to seeing good friends from both groups the same time next year. Danny Creech, Keithville, LA, Mary Fairchild, Lucedale, MS, Leslie Turpin, Bicknell Supply Company, Kevin Laird, Brookhaven, MS Kim Pinner, Doug and Mary Russell, Lufkin, TX, Dennis and Sammie Peters, Ft. Worth, TX, Jerry and Gloria Matthews, Cooper TX, Bentley Ruff, Hunter Granite Sales, Inc., Perry Giles, Duff Morrow, Waxahachie, TX Terri Reel, Star Granite and Bronze, Jim Schmidt, Conroe, TX, Myra Woodall, Star Granite and Bronze Matt and Ryan Worthington, Burleson, TX, Tony Watson, College Station, TX, Jason and Joy Campbell, Provencal, LA, Ric Dixon, Ronnie Brown, Miles Supply of Elberton, Lee and Dana Richard, Sulphor, LA Betty Manasco, Keithvile, LA, Cindi Estep, Majestic Granite Company, Inc., Mary Fairchild, Lucedale, MS, Barbara Worley, Majestic Granite Company, Inc., Stacey and Jim Patin, Pineville, LA Sue and Dody Campbell, Provencal, LA, Rebecca and Ronnie Lovinggood, Granite Sales and Supply Corporation Bonnie and Shelly Roy, Baton Rouge, LA, Brian Looney and Tammy Brown, Brownstone Memorials, Inc. Cole Brown, Natchez, MS, Kevin Laird, LilAnn Pace, Dave Pace, Davis Pace, Linda Rogers, Brookhaven, MS, Ross Oglesby, Keystone Memorials, Inc. Rocky Mountain Monument Builders Association Annual Convention July 28-30 Cody, WY The annual convention for the Rocky Mountain Monument Builders Association was held July 28-30 in beautiful Cody, Wyo. Vendors and retailers enjoyed a great show at the Cody Auditorium. Ronald Bealer visited from Canada to give a program on marketing and promotions. Jerry Klitizer, owner of a floral shop in Riverton, Wyo., gave a demonstration on showroom organization and decorations. He also created floral arrangements for memorials in a showroom to stress the importance of appearance. It will be interesting to see which beautiful location this group will choose for the 2012 convention. Ronnie Brown, Miles Supply of Elberton, Kay and Gary Stilson, Lewiston, ID Bill and Joan Fox, Henry and Henry, Inc., Nathan Beesley, Provost, UT, Drew Bott, Riverton, WY, Charlotte and Billy Fox, Henry and Henry, Inc. Thank you to Doris Martin of Miles Supply for providing the photos! Mid-America Monument Builders Association Annual Convention July 15-17, 2011 Branson, MO The Mid America Monument Builders Association held a well attended convention high in the Ozarks in Branson, Missouri. Featured were educational seminars on “social media strategy” and “doing less with more.” Branson is known for its entertainment, and the group enjoyed being entertained during dinner on Saturday night. MAMBA once again did a great job with the meeting, and is looking forward to being in St. Louis next year. Gerald and Dixie Atchison, Chance Wilson, Stephanie Ninemire, Vince Ninemire, Clinton, MO, Brent Holt, Keystone Memorials, Inc., Dolly, Kevin, Brenna and Leah Owens, Ryan Heller, Farmington, MO Teddy and Beth Foster, Becca Harrell, Brookland, AR, April and Michael Hughes, Bicknell Supply Company, Casey Foster, Brookland, AR John Wilcox, Sapulpa, OK, Teresa Robertson, Henry and Henry, Inc., Carleen Weisz, Sapulpa, OK, Rick Robertson, Joan and Bill Fox, Henry and Henry, Inc., Georgia and Edward Kelly, Henryetta, OK Brent Slatten, St. Louis, MO, Diane Bacon, St. Louis, MO, Chris Garrell, Marysville, KS, Leonard Bacon, St. Louis, MO, Josh Trimble, Marysville, KS, Anita Nelson, St. Joseph, MO, Josh Bell, Melissa Theissen, Jim Bell, Beloit, KS, Janet Clark, Marysville, KS, Ruth Bell, Beloit, KS, BettyAnn Slaten, St. Louis, MO, Linda Willis Morris, Granite, OK, Nicholas Day, St. Louis, MO, Tom Oglesby, Keystone Granite Company, Inc. Chad Brown, Brownstone Memorials, Inc., Beth, Casey, Teddy Foster, Brookland, AR, Sandy Thornton, Brownstone Memorials, Inc., Becca Harrell, Brookland, AR Jeff Adkinson, Lexington, MO, Jason Travis, St. Clair, MO, KC Girtch, Lexington, MO, Bob Nelson, Keystone Memorials, Inc. Diane and Leonard Bacon, St. Louis, MO, Kevin and Dolly Owens, Farmington, MO, Ric Dixon, Miles Supply of Elberton, Inc.