Families relieved city will help after cemetery damage

Families relieved city will help after cemetery damage

TOLEDO (WTOL) - Families with loved ones lost, feel like their pain continued after seeing the damage at Riverside Cemetery.

Ice Jams in the Maumee River led to flooding which separated stones from their base and more.

"It's a beautiful spot normally, but to look at it now,” said Sara Graff. “I'm sorry it's just upsetting."

Sara went to visit her father Ken Nicholson’s grave for the first time since the ice jams shut down Riverside Cemetery in February. She was shocked to find his headstone uprooted and surrounded by ice still a month later. She said being able to visit his headstone makes her feel close to the man she cherished and misses so much.

"I feel like I’m losing him again because of this,” said Graff.

Parts of the cemetery remain blocked off at this time. City leaders say it could take several months until all the repairs are made.

"It was one of those things where it was, here we go again," said Joe Camp, City of Maumee Service Director.

When city leaders saw the damage, it gave them flashbacks to 2015 when ice jams created major issues. They say they avoided ice damage, but saw more than four feet of flooding. They feel better prepared to handle the situation now.

"It gave us a sense of what our needs actually really were and where we were efficient and what policies that we needed to create,” explained Camp.

Maumee Mayor Richard Carr said city council is expected to approve $12,000 to get the equipment needed to put the cemetery back together. He said they will also need funding to approve extra workers to help, but it’s the right thing to do.

"This is Maumee and this is part of what we do,” said Mayor Carr. “We did it in 2015, we're going to do it again this year. We will put them back up, we'll make sure they are done properly that they are clean so that the families have confidence."

Sara said knowing the city sees their hurt and is going to help brings comfort.

“I’m very grateful for the city that they want to help make things right and that they are willing to get something going,” said Sara Graff.

Maumee City Council will vote to approve the funds at Monday’s meeting.

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