Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens

4569 Shoulders Hill Road, Suffolk, VA 23435 | 757-488-4971 | MAP

History of Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens
Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens was founded in 1960 with over ninety acres of land for traditional ground burials. Mr. Roy Dudley was 36 years old with a wife and three children to support when he created the cemetery. He began with $6,000 that he borrowed. They operated the cemetery out of the original farmhouse on the property. In fact, former Governor Mills Godwin served on the Board of Governors for Meadowbrook in its early years.

In 1961, Meadowbrook built the first Chapel Mausoleum in the Hampton Roads area and it is still one of the most beautiful. Mrs. Dudley was the resident horticulturist. She and Roy would meet at Bennett’s Creek Nursery, select the flowers, trees and shrubs together and plant them together. The Dudley family had an eye for beauty and a commitment to creating spaces that would service families for generations and we are dedicated to continuing that vision.

The Garden of Christ was the first garden created. Roy Dudley dug the first grave by hand. The sidewalks in a few of our gardens are in the shape of a cross. The Christ feature and the Cross Garden features were sculpted by hand in Italy from marble extracted from the quarry in Carrara, Italy. This is the same quarry from which many of Michelangelo’s blocks of marble were extracted for his famous works, such as the Pieta and David.

In our Cross Garden, the Christ feature is carrying a cross that was handed down from a church that was being torn down in Driver, VA. Roy Dudley and his son, Ted, traveled to the mountains of Virginia to personally descend 300 feet into a quarry to select the stone for the base of the Cross feature.

The Garden of Devotion is bound by pine trees on the left and hedges on the right and has a sidewalk leading to the Devotion feature. The feature is white granite, engraved with “Our love is deep and lasting. The kind that has no end.”

The Garden of Eternity was also developed by the Dudley family. Their son, Ted and family created and built the granite base, the octagonal top and set the feature, which is a bronze sundial that actually tells the correct time.

The feature in our Masonic garden is a curved column that came from the White House in Washington, D.C. after one of its remodels. Mr. Roy Dudley had the Masonic Emblem etched into the column. The pink marble urn was hand carved in Italy.

Our spectacular magnolia tree is another focal point at Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens. It occupies center stage in the circle and everyone entering or exiting drives past it. This southern magnolia tree was a sapling trying to grow in the ditch in 1982, when Roy Dudley instructed his young son, Ted, to plant the magnolia in the circle. Today, this magnificent magnolia has its own saplings sprouting from the base giving it the shape of a Christmas tree. This is the site of our newest garden called the Magnolia Cremation Garden. This garden combines the “traditional” ground burial with the environmentally and financially conservative choice of cremation. This garden has been created to offer families an alternative to traditional ground burial or niche.

We have found that all the Gardens at Meadowbrook Memorial are very special places with their own unique warmth and appeal.

Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens was purchased by an affiliate of Service Corporation International (SCI) from the original owners/developers, Mr. & Mrs. Roy Dudley, and serves families under the Dignity Memorial® brand name.

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