If you speak to Ron Haddock for a few minutes, you immediately know what’s most important to him – his family. That love for family led Ron and his wife Sandy to build a beautiful Private Estate® in Dallas, where the Haddocks have taken root for more than 30 years.
When Ron and Sandy began planning their Private Estate, they had no family history with mausoleums.
“My wife and I, who have been married 63 years, decided upon a mausoleum for three reasons,” says Haddock. “First, we wanted to avoid burdening our children when it comes to making arrangements. Second, a mausoleum appealed to us because my wife strongly preferred not to be underground and not to be cremated. Third, we wanted to provide the opportunity for our children and families to join us if they choose to, again to make things easier for them.”
The couple knew they would want to locate the mausoleum in Dallas, and they also had a long familiarity with the city’s Sparkman/Hillcrest Funeral Home and Memorial Park.
“Sparkman/Hillcrest is known for its quality—the quality of the cemetery, the quality of the people, and the quality of their relationship with Coldspring,” explains Ron Haddock.
For the design of the mausoleum itself, Ron and Sandy Haddock relied heavily on information provided by the Coldspring team as well as by Service Corporation International (SCI, owner of Sparkman/Hillcrest).
“We spent a day in Minnesota with Coldspring,” says Haddock. “We wanted to see their plant and meet their management team. I’ve been in business for 66 years and I know you can learn a lot when you visit an operating facility.”
The couple initially looked at standard mausoleum designs but in the end went with a highly customized design with various architectural features reflecting their tastes and home design, such as gold leaf and wood coffered ceilings.
“We wanted the space to feel warm, cheerful and light, on both its exterior and interior,” says Haddock. “We also wanted—perhaps uniquely—a space that is air conditioned and has music playing. One of our grandsons is a country music singer and it is his music that will play.” Further personalizing the space, the Haddocks’ oldest son Mark, an architect, helped with the mausoleum’s planning and design.
“Mark has worked primarily with hotel design, giving him a lot of experience with stonework,” says Haddock. “He went with us to the Coldspring quarry and helped us with the selection of granites, colors and other features.”
The Haddock mausoleum features a classical architectural style. Its roof is constructed of only four stone slabs. Coldspring constructs mausoleum walls and roofs using stone panels that are as large as possible, reducing the total number of pieces and joints needed—which is not only beneficial to the aesthetics of the finished building but reduces future maintenance, as well.
The Haddocks’ choice of Sierra White® granite was a good fit for the project as it can be quarried in very large pieces and complements classical architecture very well, creating shadows that emphasize architectural elements such as sculpted capitals and dentils.
Coldspring designed the Haddock Private Estate roof to include:
- Two 9-inch-thick crypt roof stones measuring 8 feet, 8 inches by 10 feet, 11 inches. The stones weighed 11,900 pounds each.
- Two 10-inch-thick vestibule roof stones measuring 9 feet, 6 inches by 15 feet, 5 inches. The stones weighed 19,600 pounds each.
The Haddock Private Estate also has two 3,600 pound pieces of granite in its front porch and a keystone weighing approximately 3,000 pounds.
“Even with some pieces weighing thousands of pounds, the installation went very smoothly with Coldspring and their team,” says Mark Patterson, General Manager, Hillcrest Memorial Park.
In addition to providing design services, Coldspring specified the mausoleum’s construction methods for the building’s foundation, granite fabrication, electric, HVAC, lighted glass niches, ambient lighting, the Wi-Fi and sound system, and the water feature.
“Throughout this project, we had great partnerships,” says Haddock. “Audrey Mitchell, a sales counselor at Sparkman/Hillcrest and our initial contact there, helped us during our evaluation stage. Coldspring and SCI were wide open to working with us and were also flexible. Coldspring’s designers were able to listen to us to understand our wishes and then translate that into drawings and design features that were right on target. From my years of experience in business, I know this is not always the case. Many project managers are not as responsive.”
The Haddock Private Estate is a heritage piece for the family to enjoy for generations and a showpiece at the memorial park.
“We always present families with every option, every time,” says Patterson. “But sometimes it helps people to see in person what’s possible. Now, we’re able to do that.”
Ron Haddock sums up his experience in planning a Private Estate: “We’ve been blessed by having the opportunity to work with Coldspring and SCI to create this warm, loving environment for our family.”
Ron and Sandy Haddock intend for the mausoleum to endure in perpetuity, providing a place their family can visit and share with them in the future.
Interested in a Private Estates for your cemetery? Contact your Coldspring Regional Sales Manager.