Billy Graham’s $200 Casket Made By Prison Inmates Despite His Net Worth Estimated At $25 Million
Billy Graham was a wealthy man both spiritually and financially, yet the casket that carried his remains to the grave was made by “hardened prisoners” at Lousiana State Penitentiary. The three names of the prisoners who made Billy Graham’s casket were burned into the pine-plywood that was used to craft the coffin inside the prison walls.
According to CNN, “Handcrafted by Richard Liggett, Paul Krolowitz, Clifford Bowman” were the names burned into the casket that was lowered into the grave containing the body of Billy Graham. It was back in 2006 when this plain wooden casket was built especially for the purpose of being lowered into the Charlotte, North Carolina, grave of Billy Graham, reports CNN.
Inside that casket, the body of Billy Graham was lowered into the grave right next to his wife, Ruth, at the foot of a walkway that was shaped like a cross in the garden of the Billy Graham Library. The spiritual leader who is known worldwide joined his wife in their final resting place.
The casket that Ruth Graham was buried in was also crafted at the same penitentiary by “harden prisoners.” The caskets were made for Billy and Ruth Graham after their son Franklin Graham visited the Lousiana State Penitentiary in 2005.
Graham’s son was said to be struck by the simplicity and beauty of the simple pine caskets these prisoners were making. He requested that two of these caskets be made for his parents and that request was honored.
Billy Graham’s casket has sat waiting for the day that would eventually come since it was crafted in 2006. The simple coffins crafted for both Graham and his wife had a cross on top. They were lined inside with a white mattress pad. The entire cost of making one of these caskets is about $200.
According to a previous Inquisitr article, Billy Graham’s net worth at his death is an estimated $25 million. So it is safe to say that this man didn’t need one of these coffins for the original purpose assigned to the caskets.
The warden started the coffin-building inside the prison because of a need for caskets. The prisoners who died poor were being buried in cardboard boxes and the warden wanted something more for these deceased men.
Roy Graham, who is Franklin Graham’s son, shared the story of the day his father came home from the prison and told his mother, Ruth Graham, that he had coffins being built for both her and his father, Billy Graham, by the prisoners. Roy said his grandmother thought that was “outstanding.”
The grandson of Billy Graham said, “the prisoners are people who need forgiveness too” and that is what his grandmother loved about the idea of her and Billy Graham’s caskets coming from within the Lousiana State Penitentiary walls. You can see the video above of Franklyn discussing the story of his grandparent’s caskets.