Police Search For Grave Vandals
Vandalism at Union City’s oldest cemetery has officials saying the amount of damage could affect your pocketbook. According to police, 52 tombstones have been either thrown off their bases, stacked one on top of another, or chipped. The foreman that oversees the cemetery says since the damage is so great, they are being pulled off other projects just to fix the problem. And that means less time and money can be spent on more productive projects around the city. Rob Ring, the foreman with the park and recreation department, says, “This is one of the worst things that can happen to a cemetery.” It is a sight that makes Ring just plain sick. Ring, adds, “This bad of damage, you just wonder why, what kind of kick they’re getting doing something like this.” 52 gravestones have been knocked over, thrown, chipped, and stacked like Jenga pieces at City View Cemetery. Officials say they are looking at about $5,000 worth of damage so far. Ring, adds, “I know at one time we had five stones on top of the smaller ones and no small kid would have been able to pick some of them stones up.” Ring says the stones can weigh an upwards of a couple hundred pounds, and date back to the mid 1800’s. Thomas Popeal, a resident, says, “It’s a part of history and we shouldn’t destroy it.” Grave markers of a couple of confederate soldiers lie within the cemetery. And what Ring says upsets him the most is the fact that a lot of them are made of limestone and cannot be replaced. For many it is the only marker of their existence. Ring, adds, “These people, that’s all they have left is the stone. That’s all they’ll ever have. If you tore it to pieces and the family moved on, who is going to show a record of that person being here because a lot of these were never written down.” Now workers are doing their best to salvage the stones, even if it means propping them up. Popeal, adds, “It is very saddening, very saddening.” At this time police say they do not have any leads. They are now in the process of contacting all the school resource officers to make them aware of what is happening.