Forest Rest Natural Cemetery, is adjacent to Mountain View Memorial Park, in Boones Mill, Virginia. It is the only natural burial location of its type between Harrisonburg, VA and Raleigh, NC.
The natural alternative to what is now considered “traditional burial” is actually the method used until the mid-1800s in the United States. It remains widely practiced in other cultures and is now regaining interest in America.
Natural burial employs no chemical embalming, no vault, and no expensive casket (although options include a biodegradable linen shroud or simple wooden box). These features minimize a burial “footprint” on the environment. For families, many of the major costs of “traditional” funerals/burials are eliminated. Another carbon-emission reducing step is the family’s option for the gravesite to be dug by hand. Further, at Forest Rest, in order to sustain the natural setting, elaborate grave markers are shunned. If families wish to have a marker for site identification, these usually consist of stones natural to the grounds, with simple memorial sentiments etched into them.