Families to attend town hall demanding repairs at Resthaven cemetery

‘It’s time to create a plan of action,’ the organizer said.

Families to attend town hall demanding repairs at Resthaven cemetery

AVON, Ohio (WOIO) - Families continue to call out the conditions of a local cemetery.

A couple hundred people are expected to gather at a town hall Tuesday night, demanding repairs at Resthaven Memory Gardens in Avon.

We have been reporting on issues at the cemetery since last August.

Families are dealing with flooded grave markers, cracked headstones and tire tracks on burial plots.

More than 1,000 people are now a part of the "Rescuing Resthaven" Facebook group.

Katie Hildebrand founded the group.

She tells 19 News that they’re going to create a plan of action at the meeting, and a lawyer will be there to answer questions.

She says they're considering future legal action as a group.

Hildebrand met with Stonemor Partners, the owners of the cemetery, last week.

She said their representatives didn't make any promises and told her they hired an engineering firm to look at drainage issues.

The cemetery said in a post on Facebook in March that they "leveled and raised many grave sites and cleaned out storm water catch basins."

This came after a meeting with the Ohio Cemetery Dispute Resolution Committee, which falls under the Ohio Department of Commerce.

A cemetery spokesperson sent us this statement in April:

“Resthaven Memory Gardens’ mission is to help families memorialize every life with dignity, including providing and maintaining a tranquil and beautiful place for memorialization. In consultation with engineering professionals, we are working on the details of an action plan to remedy flooding and related issues. When completed, we will make available an outline of the plan at the cemetery office. In the meantime, we want to reassure our families and the local community that we are committed to serving them and their loved ones.”

19 News has not seen a copy of that plan yet.

Stonemor declined to comment for our story.

In April, 19 News found there is no state law to protect families fighting for better upkeep of private cemeteries.

We are told officials declined an invitation to the town hall.

Two more complaints have been filed with the state against the cemetery since we last checked in April, bringing the total to six.

The Ohio Cemetery Dispute Resolution Committee will follow up with Stonemor on the repairs next month.

The town hall meeting is at 7:00 Tuesday night at Knights of Columbus Ragan Hall in Avon.

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