Zion residents taking action to spruce up old cemetery - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Zion residents taking action to spruce up old cemetery

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Some folks in Zion are worried about the deteriorating condition of an old cemetery on Elm Street. They want to clean it up and restore it.  

The ground is home to an unknown number of burial sites created by the Old Zion Church. Much of the area has been flattened by farm equipment. Many of the grave sites have been pushed back into the brush, and have become all but forgotten.

However, some residents say they're doing everything they can to revive the cemetery.

"Probably, we'll never know everybody buried back here," said Shelly Garza, a concerned resident. 

Garza lives in Zion, just down the road from the cemetery. She says, last week, she noticed crumbling, overturned, and all-together neglected tombstones.

"It's not right. This is a burial place. There are a bunch of veterans buried in this cemetery, too. It's not about us. It's about them.  To be known again," Garza said.

Old Zion Church was the entity who created the cemetery many decades ago. It has since ceased to exist.

"When I called the tax assessor in Henderson, they said Zion Church owned it, which earlier I just found out that it's a church that was down here. Now, nobody knows who owns it," Garza said.

Frank Nally of the Henderson Historical Society says cemeteries are often cleaned up by volunteers.

"Somebody's got to do something," said John Smith, another concerned resident. 

Smith is a veteran who also lives near the cemetery. Smith says it's wrong to leave the grave sites in such bad shape, especially when several of those buried there fought for our country.

"I'd be more than happy to maintain it myself and everything, just to keep everybody out of it. For the veterans and everybody who's buried back there, because if it was your family or anybody else's, you would want to do that," Smith said.

If you would like to help out with the clean-up effort,  you can contact Shelly Garza at 270-724-9343.

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