Cemetery tombstones cleared of debris

Cemetery tombstones cleared of debris

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Shelby County is working with families at two cemeteries after a man raised awareness about the unkempt conditions at his grandmother's grave site at Mt Carmel Cemetery.

The county is responsible for upkeep here, and now they're taking action.

"I don't want to cry about it anymore," Carl Ozier said to WMC on Monday. "I just want something done."

Now, his family and several more are finally getting results.

Tuesday, county corrections crews cleared trees from tombstones and cleaned up trash.

The cemetery's previous owners left the property abandoned.

In the meantime, things aren't much better next door at Hollywood Cemetery.

"There's a hole in my heart," said Constance Medlock, who has family buried there. "This looks like something from Michael Jackson thriller."

The county has also been in charge of this cemetery's upkeep for the past four years.

Constance lost her 4-month old daughter in 1976. She said her daughter, mother, and grandparents are all buried there.

"I can't believe they let this happen to people's loved ones," Constance said.

What used to be the office for Hollywood Cemetery is newly burned and abandoned. Plus, it has debris strewn all over the place.

Families said they feel there's no one to call for answers.

After WMC made phone calls searching for answers, a mayor's office spokesman came out to meet with the family.

"It's worth the efforts to the families," said Steve Shular with Shelby County Mayor's Office.

Shular said there has been some progress at the cemetery. He said now the county must work to see if they can find more funding to ultimately help these families get some kind of peace.

"I'm a veteran and I've seen battlegrounds better than this," said Constance's husband Emmett Medlock.

Shular said the county is committed to helping Constance look for her daughter's grave marker, even if it takes digging through a pile of grass.

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