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What Do You Want on Your Tombstone?

Some years ago, a frozen pizza company was trying to figure out an advertising campaign to bring attention to their product. They designed a series of humorous commercials where an individual was about to lose his life in some melodramatic fashion—in front of a firing squad, about to walk the plank, or a teenager who’d had a party while his parents were away for the weekend. In each case, they were asked, “What do you want on your tombstone?” to which the answer was “pepperoni and cheese” or some other pizza topping.

It was a risky ad since Americans don't want to hear about death. The company was trying to be funny with their name: Tombstone Pizza Company which originated in the Tombstone Tavern in Medford, Wisconsin. The tavern was across the street from a cemetery.

But seriously, if you requested a stone to be placed over your grave, what would you want on your tombstone?

For example, Ruth Bell Graham, the wife of evangelist Billy Graham, died in 2007 and had this chiseled into her tombstone, "End of Construction -- Thank you for your patience." She didn't pick a favorite Bible verse or a lofty quote from a famous leader. She humbled herself and admitted that her life had been "a work in progress" until she died.

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