Muncie families outraged at removal of grave-site dedications

MUNCIE, Ind.--- Many Muncie community members are feeling outraged over the spring cleaning at Elm Ridge Funeral Home and Memorial Park. They said the cemetery removed flowers and decorations from more than 20,000 grave-sites without warning.

Many people with relatives buried at the cemetery told said they were sad about what they saw.

“Right now this is the dullest graveyard I have ever seen,” said Cathy Brogan, who has loved ones buried at the cemetery.

Karen Cox showed up to pay respects to her deceased granddaughter only to find personal things missing.

“It makes me sick,” Cox said. “I can’t find everything and I don’t know where everything went.”

Cox was one of the many whom searched through a big pile of items hoping to find their lost belongings.

The cemetery’s general manager, Jeff Bates, said a warning about the spring cleaning went up six weeks prior on an electronic sign outside Elm Ridge’s front entrance.

The cemetery said that the rules and regulations have been the same since 1999. The policy states that no tethered flowers, statues or figurines are permitted at the grave-sites in order to keep up with landscaping.

“We have heard and are thoughtful of the concerns of the families we serve. Elm Ridge is dedicated to imporving our biannual cleanup process and communications,” the cemetery said in an official statement.

Bates said he plans to send out a notice in the newspaper and through various social media outlets for next year’s spring cleaning.


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