Gravedigger drives over graves at historic cemetery - WRBL

Gravedigger drives over graves at historic cemetery

Updated:
BLOUNTVILLE, TN (WJHL) -

A careless gravedigger may be to blame for tire tracks found above graves at historic Blountville Cemetery.

Concerned family members called us after they visited their loved one's grave, only to find someone had driven over several plots nearby.

The graves are clearly marked and there's more than enough room for a backhoe to get in and out without running over a single grave in the section of cemetery in question.

Still, that didn't stop someone from carelessly running over the graves. In fact, one set of tire tracks clearly shows a person not only drove over a veteran's grave, he or she drove over the grave marker too. The tracks all lead to two piles of dirt.

Shortly after we called the treasurer of the Blountville Cemetery Association, his sons came to take a look at the damage. Jim Long says this is the first the association's heard of this. He says the association isn't in charge of burying people. Instead, he says that's the job of the funeral home chosen by the family of the deceased.

Long says several funeral homes have buried people there in the past. Regardless, he says it's clear that one of the backhoe operators contracted by one of those many funeral homes was negligent.

"We just now found about this and didn't know anything about it and we would like to see that it never happens again and we'll contact those people who are responsible and make sure these kind of things are not done again," Long said. "That the people who are responsible next time are careful to watch out for other people's graves."

In the section of the cemetery in question there are a lot of newer graves, but there are hundreds of others spread across the property. Some of the graves date back to the 1820's. A battle during the Civil War also took place at the cemetery. Luckily, the problem appears to be isolated to just one section of the cemetery.

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