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Deep In The Woods Of Washington Lies A Monument That You Need To See To Believe

For many, a modest gravestone is all that’s requested for their burial site. Others choose to have their ashes scattered at sea. But for John S. McMillin, neither of those options would do.

Before the successful businessman, mason, and devoted Methodist passed, he had a burial ground built for his family that is rich with symbolism and beautiful in nature. Not only did he want to leave a lasting impression on the world, he wanted to show everyone what was truly important to him — family.

McMillin had a mausoleum erected to house the remains of his family deep in the woods of Washington — to many, it’s known as the Afterglow Vista.

The entrance is grandiose, showing what McMillin thought to be valuable, his work and his family.

This open-air rotunda has a limestone table in the center, with thick stone chairs surrounding it. The chairs, acting as headstones, actually contain the ashes of the McMillin family.

There appears to be an empty space at the table, which is meant to represent where the McMillin son should be buried, but he turned away from Methodism.

There is also a purposely “broken” column in the rotunda that represents the unfinished nature of a man’s life.

If you want to plan a visit to this mausoleum, it is on San Juan Island in Washington state. It will take a while to get there, but it’s totally worth the trek.

(via Atlas Obscura, Thendara Marie Kida-Gee)

We must thank the wonderful photographer Thendara Marie Kida-Gee for her exquisite photographs of this amazing burial site. They really capture the symbolic nature of this mausoleum and show the grandeur of this monument to a man’s life and love for his family.

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