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About Mark

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Mark Luken, President of West River Monument Company, is a third generation monument builder. He was introduced to the trade by his grandfather, father and uncle. His talent for art only adds to his monument expertise. He was recognized in High School with many art awards, including the Oscar Howe Award for Fine Art. He studied at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion and also the Colorado Institute of Art in Denver. His fine art skills enhance every memorial project adding quality and perfection to every piece. His fine art has been published, featured in galleries, shown at art festivals and can be found on walls of collectors worldwide. Mark’s love for history has also been showcased through memorial and cemetery preservation and restoration. His respect and pride for veterans prompted him to provide markers for civil war veterans interred at Vinegar Hill Cemetery, in Galena, SD. As a member of the Galena Historical Society, he has worked with members to help preserve the rich history of their community cemetery. He has also worked with other communities to preserve their cemeteries. The memorials he creates are superior in quality and craftsmanship. Mark is very skilled at shape carving. Shape carving is the art of making flowers and some designs have a sculpted, three dimensional look on the memorial. Many companies will just flat carve flowers but Mark takes the time to shape the leaves and petals of flowers. Take some time to really look at his work and you will see the expertise and quality. One of the great things about buying a memorial from West River Monument is working directly with the artist. All memorials are handcrafted here in the Rapid City carving center. He takes pride in his work and does not take short cuts. Mark is also proud to promote American granite. West River Monument Company truly is a family business. Mark enjoys sharing his skills and is thrilled his two sons have taken an interest in the business. They are learning all the aspects of monument building. His wife operates the office and is a memorial planning counselor.


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