Walter Breuning finally home in mausoleum niche

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People who die and get cremated don’t always end up on the mantelpiece at home.

They might get scattered at a ski resort or favorite fishing spot, for example.

But mostly they end up at outdoor cemeteries or indoor facilities like the Hillcrest Lawn Memorial Association mausoleum in Great Falls.

Urns and other receptacles for ashes are getting much flashier these days, said Bill Ballowe, who has worked part-time at the mausoleum for two years.

“I’ve got people in brown paper bags and whiskey jugs,” Ballowe said with a chuckle Saturday.

Most people are a bit more reserved than that, but family members are beginning to opt for high-tech approaches. Displayed in niches on one newer area of Hillcrest Lawn are several metal urns with images of the deceased engraved on them. Nearby, one woman’s color image is displayed with images of her favorite dogs also shown on the urn’s surface.

One newly occupied niche at Hillcrest Lawn contains the urn of Walter Breuning, who died last year after nearly a two-year stint as the world’s oldest man.

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