▶️ Desecrated graves in Greenwood Cemetery will be moved

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A cemetery operator has obtained permission to disinter people buried in unmarked graves and rebury them in a safer location.

People are desecrating graves in Greenwood Cemetery at the base of Pilot Butte without even knowing it.

That’s partially because many of the graves are unmarked.

We asked permission of the operator to gain access to the property which they denied.

The owner of Greenwood Cemetery sought Deschutes County Commission approval to move several graves of unknown, indigent people who were buried in unmarked graves prior to 1970.

Because the cemetery owner does not have records of who is buried in those graves, they sought approval of the county’s highest authority to do the work.

“People do show up and kind of drive by or across that area,” said Tony DeBone, Deschutes County Commission Chair. “This is out of respect. It’s my understanding this is an effort to take some undocumented gravesites and put them in a more respectful location.”

In its request to the county commission, the cemetery owner said, “inconsiderate people drive over the graves, leave trash, including hypodermic needles, and otherwise desecrate the graves.”

Oregon Care Group LLC received Deschutes County Commission approval to disinter the remains of those unmarked graves of unknown persons and relocate them to a better protected part of the cemetery where they are less likely to be desecrated.

Oregon Care Group said it will use ground penetrating radar to locate the unmarked graves.

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