City of Lebanon comes together to repair over 150 damaged headstones

Many funeral homes are having to find creative ways to accommodate large families while still...
Many funeral homes are having to find creative ways to accommodate large families while still adhering to the CDC's guidelines.(WAFB)
Published: Jul. 28, 2022 at 4:20 PM CDT
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LEBANON, Tenn. (WSMV) - After a cemetery was vandalized in Lebanon, many community members have begun working together to rectify the damage to over 150 headstones.

In mid-July, dozens of Lebanon families were shocked when police released a video of over 150 headstones that were destroyed. Police arrested 31-year-old Justin Elmer and 23-year-old Jeremy Heaton, both of Lebanon, who confessed to the crime. Both men have been charged with vandalism over $60,000.

The City of Lebanon said officials with the Cedar Grove Cemetery and the Lebanon Police Department have been working to contact families affected by the crime.

The Street Department, along with Sam Crutcher and R.T Baldwin, have assisted in overseeing the repair process of the damage done in the cemetery, according to Lebanon Mayor Rick Bell. According to Mayor Bell, each damaged monument has been identified and added to a list of families to contact. The repairs are expected to take a long time.

“As I stated before, the vandalism of Cedar Grove Cemetery was a destructive act against people who have family members buried there and against the history of our community. We at the City of Lebanon will make sure that the cemetery returns to the beautiful sacred grounds it has always been,” said Mayor Bell on Facebook.

The Tennessee Historical Commission, the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, and many other services are reportedly assisting in the repairs.

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