by Terry Rogers
On Sunday, August 30, several members of the community posted photos on social media of the Milford Community Cemetery on North Washington Street. The photos depicted gravestones vaults and other structures in the cemetery covered in grass clippings.
“A friend of mine went out to the cemetery to visit his son,” Carol Schaap posted with photos of grass covering names on tombstones and sprayed against above-ground tombs. “Look at this mess. We all have family and great friends resting here.”
According to Mark Whitfield, City Manager, a contractor was hired to cut the grass in the cemetery by the Milford Community Cemetery Board.
“It was a combination of the grass getting ahead of them, and them needing to get it cut ASAP,” Whitfield said. “They really just got into too big of a hurry. The contractor was quite apologetic and willingly offered to clean up the mess.”
City staff and the Mayor are on the Milford Cemetery Board with Milford Parks and Recreation tasked with overseeing the contractor. The City receives no funds for that service, Whitfield explained.
On Tuesday, Milford resident Rachel Messick Fetterman posted an update to a previous post regarding the issue at the cemetery.
“I drove out there this morning and was able to meet up with the director of Parks and Rec,” Fetterman said. “He was so apologetic. I know him and his heart really showed through. He had already set up a meeting with the contractor that does the mowing to go over things. Several other people were out there as well to take a look. This is the final resting place of our earthly bodies and a representation of how we respect them. You would never ride by an elite housing development and see this, or a golf course. I have full confidence that this will be resolved. Thank you, Brad. Your words were just what I needed to hear.”
As of Friday, the majority of the gravestones had been cleaned by the contractor.