Due to a major mistake by my internet provider I have been offline for over two weeks but shadowsflyaway is back again!
Animals increasingly appear on modern memorials and I’ve often wondered if they are a totem for the deceased or maybe they just like them or maybe they had a pet. Cats are very common and I’ve seen them either in 2D carved on a headstone or in 3D form as a small statue.
But this one is unusual as it’s very personal, almost in a code, and is on a memorial stone in Brompton Cemetery’s Garden of Remembrance. Most memorial stones are small and people use calligraphy or a very small motif due to the limited size. The family name isn’t stated on this stone and the images are almost playful.
I was lucky enough to meet the widow of the man commemorated on the plaque. She is Maria Kacandes-Kamil and the mommy cat represented her. The two her cats were her daughters and the camel depicted her husband, Steven, who died in 2011. The significance of the camel is a reference
to the family name (you may have guessed it already) which is Kamil. Also note that the mommy cat, Maria, is pointing at the camel to possibly denote the marital bond.
It was lovely to find a modern memorial which had a touch of humour as well as being very personal.
How many casual passer-bys like myself would have guessed the significance of the animals?
© text and photo Carole Tyrrell