Meet the man behind the trend in tombstones

Like I always say to my clients, we don't sell tombstones we sell memories.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

In the past, a headstone used to be a pile of rocks, a monolith or a massive plaque placed at the grave, but all this has since evolved.

Lebohang Khitsane is the CEO of Bataung Tombstone.

The company has manufactured and erected personalised tombstones for clients as for a field as Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland.

Well known for his unique offerings, Khitsane created tombstones for the likes of Vuyo Mbuli, John 'Shoes' Moshoeu, and most recently for TV legend Joe Mafela.

Vuyo Mbuli's tombstone at the Wespark Cemetary in Johannesburg. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN

Bataung Tombstone has been described as the 'cutting edge of tombstone design and innovation', being the first to incorporate QR codes as well as braille writing which is in the Guinness World Book of Records.

Khitsane spoke to Eusebius McKaiser about dealing with grief as well as the rituals associated with the business.

It's very difficult because whenever you meet people they have mixed emotions, some want to do a stone immediately so that everything can be done once and to share everything with close ones that are there at the time.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

He explains the process of creation.

Luckily with a lot of families they have committees and so many people dealing with a lot of things.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

You have to be in their shoes and just feel with them because that is how I get involved... link up with them spiritually in a way and create something that is wow.. I think its a God given gift.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

We ask around, how did this person make you feel, what was this persons character and then we sit down and start structuring the tombstone. Like right now I am busy with the tombstone of a taxi owner, we created mini bus taxi's for his tombstone... we managed to get one photo and created a beautiful statue bust for him.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

Responding to critics, Khitsane says one should stick to what they believe in.

Stick to what you believe in, if you really loved your love one give them what they deserve. People were saying about Joe Mafela that the stone is too much, but it's his character. Whenever he finished what he was doing at work he came home sat down and watched TV in his lounge.

Lebohang Khitsane, CEO of Bataung Tombstone

Click below to listen to the full interview......


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