In life, 28-year-old Army Sgt. Kimberly Walker was obsessed with SpongeBob SquarePants so her family decided to erect a monument of the cartoon character wearing an army uniform and another wearing a navy uniform for her surviving twin sister, Kara. Each 6-foot-tall statue weighs 7,000 lbs. and costs $13,000. The gravestones were approved but later removed from the Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati.
President Gary Freytag said in a statement:
Spring Grove is deeply sorry for the issues involving the monument the Walker family recently purchased. The family chose a design with the guidance of a Spring Grove employee who unfortunately made an error in judgment. The monument does not fit within Spring Grove Cemetery guidelines, was not approved by senior management and cannot remain here. As an historic cemetery, we must constantly balance the needs of families who have just suffered a loss with the thousands of families who have entrusted us in the past. We are working with the Walker family and are committed to design a solution, at our expense, that will properly memorialize Kimberly within the context of Spring Grove’s historic landscape and guidelines.
“We had our heart set on SpongeBob,” said Deborah Walker, Kimberly’s mother.