Picking up the pieces: Fixing damaged headstones
PLEASANT PLAINS TWP. — Although the weather has been gloomy and wet for much of the past few weeks, Karl Walls, and Greg Nichols can be seen most days repairing graves damaged by the Aug. 28 storm at Pleasant Plains Township Cemetery.
Walls, director of Verdun Funeral Home, and Nichols, caretaker and sexton for Pleasant Plains Township Cemetery, received the bid from Pleasant Plains Township to repair the damaged stones, which mostly occurred on the west side of the cemetery in the oldest section, adjoining Webber Township Cemetery.
Thirty stones have been knocked off, tipped over or damaged by the storm.
“These broken stones had trees fall on them, or the wind knocked over some of the taller stones which have been loosened from the granite deteriorating over time,” Walls said. “We straightened and re-set 20 to 30 other stones. I told the township we would fix a few of them for nothing, which only took two to three minutes to repair and didn’t really cost us extra to fix. Some of the taller stones we are working on repairing in stages because they are so heavy.
“We get out here on nice days and work a few hours. We are about 80 percent done now.”
Once the stones are all fixed, Nichols will repair the landscaping where the trees hit the ground and reseed.