Oaklawn Cemetery expands with new facilities

Oaklawn Cemetery expands with new facilities
Rendering of the new Life Well Celebrated Center

Hardage-Giddens Oaklawn Chapel and Cemetery plans to expand its facility located on San Jose Boulevard to include a new chapel, Life Well Celebrated Center, a spacious funeral reception area, and expanded parking facilities for funerals and memorial services.

The planned expansion will take place on six acres formerly owned by the Shad family, which has owned the property adjacent to the existing cemetery for many generations.

“We are excited about our expansion plans, which will allow us to better serve families in the Jacksonville area,” said Jody Brandenburg, president of Hardage-Giddens Funeral Homes, Cemeteries and Cremations. “The six-acre addition from the Shad Family Plantation will allow us to add options like family estates and private family mausoleums to the property. We take great pride in maintaining our beautiful, park-like grounds, and these enhancements will only add to the beauty, function, and convenience of our location.”

Opened in 1927, Oaklawn Cemetery has been a fixture in the San Marco area for 90 years. Tommy C. Shad, owner and caretaker of the Shad family property adjacent to the cemetery, said timing and determining what was in the best interest for his family influenced his decision to sell. He said the property had been in his family for many generations and that he wanted sell to someone who would respect the property.

“We wanted a buyer that would honor and preserve the property,” said Shad. “We wanted one that would take an active role in maintaining the integrity of its unique beauty. Oaklawn is the best fit, and we are confident in its reputation and heritage.”

The new chapel and Life Well Celebrated Center will be located on the north side of Oaklawn Cemetery on Inman Place just off San Jose Boulevard. “It will have the same décor and the same feel as our present facility,” said Brandenburg, noting the expansion will allow Hardage-Giddens to host larger events and services, as well as provide additional parking for funerals, memorial services and visitations.

“This really comes in response to the community’s request for individualized and customized Life Well Celebrated services,” he said.

By Marcia Hodgson
Resident Community News

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