Families React to Loved Ones' Grave Sites Being Vandalized

Graves at Greenlawn Memorial Cemetery were vandalized. News19's Nic Jones reports.

Columbia, SC (WLTX) - Nearly $15,000 worth of damage was caused at the Greenlawn Memorial Cemetery late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.

Broken vases and flowers were ripped and thrown across grave sites all over the cemetery. Many people come to visit their loved ones, especially during holidays, but now folks like Tina Ravenell are having to check their loved ones' grave.

"It kind of shocked me at first. I just couldn't say anything but wow," said Ravenell. "A lot of people spend a lot of money on these plates and stuff. You have to be a pretty miserable, angry person to come out here and vandalize someone's property."

Kim Reid's husband got the news and she says it was difficult for him.

"He was very upset that somebody could do this to graves or anything but let alone graves. It was hard for him to come out here," said Reid.

Her and her husband along with many other families flooded the cemetery to clean up what they could find on anyone's grave.

Suzane Elkins, the general manager of the cemetery, says they are working with Columbia Police to find out who would do something like this.

"Why a cemetery? There's nothing to steal. There's nothing to take worth value except families precious memories. It's just nonsense," said Elkins.

The Thompson Funeral Home office says they will be replacing vases and flowers for free.

Reid, along with other families, just want justice for their loved ones.

"It's very disrespectful. You can't go around destroying stuff that isn't yours. It's very wrong and I hope they are found," said Reid.

The cemetery plans to hold a cookout for the families on Saturday, July 8th, to replace the flowers that were vandalized.

© 2017 WLTX-TV


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