Volunteers needed to clean Eastern Cemetery for Memorial Day - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Volunteers needed to clean Eastern Cemetery for Memorial Day

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Broken headstones and overgrown grass are spread throughout Eastern Cemetery. Broken headstones and overgrown grass are spread throughout Eastern Cemetery.
From the outside, Eastern Cemetery appears fine. From the outside, Eastern Cemetery appears fine.
LOUISVILLE, Ky.  (WDRB) -- Broken headstones, overgrown grass and widespread vandalism: those are the conditions at Eastern Cemetery in the Highlands.

From outside the gates, Eastern Cemetery doesn't look too bad, but the view gets worse.

"When you come in here, I mean, your heart just sobs because the place just looks like a dump," said Harold Dawson, a volunteer with Friends of Eastern Cemetery.

Right now, the place is a mess. 

"Alford is my grandfather, and this is his wife Addy and my uncle Harold. I have nine family members right her in one little plot," Dawson said.

And that's why the cemetery still has a special place in Dawson's heart. 

"I am more attached than a lot of people because my own family being in it," said Dawson. 

"We have at least 20 to 30 to come out virtually every Sunday this year."

The group was formed because the cemetery doesn't have an owner. 

"It's my understanding the city of Louisville was offered it at one time, but they turned it down," explained Dawson.

And just about everywhere you look, there's overgrown grass, broken headstones and debris. 

That's why Dawson says, "it just needs tender loving care and it needs lots of volunteers."

And that's exactly what the volunteer group has been doing for the last few years, but with Memorial Day weekend coming, they need more help.

"It's a time to honor and then when you see weeds that are up to your knees and things. That...that sure takes the glory out of it," he said.

The group is asking volunteers to contact them on Facebook or just show up this weekend ready to work.

Dawson says, "Usually starts about between 10 and 11 in the morning and you virtually just work until you are tired."

The volunteer group is hoping any extra help they pick up will continue year round and not just through the holiday weekend.

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