Follow the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
Tweets from the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Someone has been stealing from the dead.
Not just from cemeteries, but from the graves of men and women who have served our country. Six bronze veterans markers have been swiped from Bethany Memorial Cemetery, along with bonze vases.
The markers list a soldier's rank, as well as the wars he or she served in.
At least two other cemeteries, Resthaven and Evergreen, confirm they've been hit by thieves too.
It happened to Bethany Memorial in January, but some families are just finding out about it.
Anita Meadows travels from Taylorsville to Louisville to tend to her father's grave as often as she can. Sgt. Hubert Meadows was laid to rest at Bethany Memorial Cemetery after retiring from Fort Knox with 36 years in the military.
Anita says her father did seven tours serving in Korea and in World War II -- a recognition that would be robbed from his grave site.
"It's just so unfair," she sobs. "And for somebody to mess with him 38 years after he's gone... no. No. That's not going to happen."
Someone swiped the bronze government grave marker that told of Hubert Meadows' service. And his marker isn't the only one missing. Another person served in the same unit, and theirs was taken too. In fact, the cemetery tells WDRB that six bronze VA markers were stolen, all at the same time.
"We try to help the families as much as we can...get the paperwork together to reorder the marker because they are supplied to the families free of charge through the government," said Jon Keith of Bethany Memorial Cemetery.
Resthaven and Evergreen cemeteries confirm they have also had problems with thieves. In February, police charged Dixie and Lenord Madden and Christopher Payton with violating graves. Officers say they're behind the missing markers and bronze vases stolen at Bethany.
"It's not right," Meadows said.
Meadows just learned of the theft this week and is now waging war against the people buying stolen metal.
The markers -- which are priceless to the families of the deceased -- sell for about $30 at a scrap yard.