Sons of Confederate Veterans move remains of Nathan Bedford Forrest
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The remains of Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife Mary are no longer resting at Health Sciences Park as of Monday, June 7th, at 9:01 a.m.
The time 9:01 is significant to Memphis Greenspace President Van Turner.
“I do think it was God ordained and really 901 means something. It means we have grit. It means we have grind. And it means that when we come together, we can get the job done,” says Turner.
The removal process was very detailed. Crews say ended up resembling an archaeological excavation site to preserve the remains, which were 10 feet below the plaza
The Sons of Confederate Veterans is funding the relocation process and member Lee Millar says that members of the Forrest family were present at the time of the removal.
“The family was very pleased that it gone so well, and the entire process has gone so well, too. So yeah, we’ve been in close contact with the family. Some of them have been here in addition to myself,” says Millar.
The remains are now in an undisclosed location and are headed to Middle Tennessee where they will then be transferred to a new resting place.
Brent Taylor, a funeral director who facilitated the process, says he’s glad this was done in a peaceful manner.
“I say it’s probably one of the most important roles I’ve participated in because I find myself in the middle of the two communities surrounding this monument and the graves General Forrest and his wife, how we move forward is critically important,” says Taylor.
This comes as a Juneteenth Celebration is scheduled to take place at the park next week and is a fresh start for everyone involved.
“Mr. Miller and I may not agree on history, but where we can agree on is we’re happy for this day. We’re happy that we were able to get this done. His side has satisfied our side and satisfied. And hopefully, again, this would be an example for Memphis to move forward in the future,” says Turner.
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