Century-Old Cemetery In Van Buren County Damaged By Strong Winds

Posted at 7:32 PM, Nov 18, 2013
and last updated 2013-11-18 20:17:36-05

LAWTON, Mich.,– Van Buren county got hit hard by Sunday’s storm, including the small town of Lawton’s cemetery. Mother Nature made no expectations as it tore through the oldest part of the Oak Grove Cemetery, taking down headstones in its path.

Many of the headstones in that area are that of civil war veterans and as we walked through the grounds with police Chief Tom Verburg he was left nearly speechless at what he saw.  “It’s just always fascinating to look at the history but then you see something like this and it kind of hits you in the stomach a little bit, takes the wind out of you,” he said.

Verburg estimates it could take months before the it’s back to normal because a lot of work will have to be done by hand since you can’t get equipment through many of the parts of the cemetery. Verburg says despite the mess and the work ahead he is confident that the community will together.

“Sometimes it makes a community stronger when you have these kinds of events this is the kind of thing. I trust this community has the people to help take care of these kinds of things.”

If you want to help, Verburg asks that for the time being you call the Public Safety Department before doing anything.