By Valerie Baldowski
Members of the Stockbridge Civic Association, and Eureka Masonic Lodge No. 354, plan to clean up an unnamed cemetery adjoining Memorial Park on Saturday, and both groups are soliciting volunteers.
The sprucing up of the cemetery has been needed for some time, according to Stockbridge Mayor Lee Stuart.
"It's long overdue ... it's paying respect to others," he said. "We didn't get here on our own. It's the people who went before us, and the least we can do is to turn around and memorialize them by taking care of their gravesites."
A number of repairs need to be made to several gravesites, according to Alphonso Thomas, of the Stockbridge Civic Association.
"We also asked the family members with family plots in the cemetery to come out and take more of a role in cleaning up," said Thomas. He said the unnamed cemetery is between 80 and 100 years old.
At the cemetery, Thomas said, some apparent graves have no headstones, "but you can tell that there's a grave ... the ground is sunken in."
"A lot of the slabs are cracked and broken, weeds are overgrown, and a lot of trees are uprooting the slabs. There's just a lot that we need to do," Thomas added.
The clean-up event will be from 1 to 5 p.m., at the Stockbridge cemetery, which reportedly came into being when land for the burial site was donated to two different churches, Trinity United Methodist and Floyd Chapel Baptist, according to Thomas.
On Saturday, volunteers will trim weeds, cut down small trees, rake leaves, pick up sticks, and help family members clean headstones.
The city will lend support by providing equipment, said Stuart.
Memorial Park is located at 106 Jennings Way in Stockbridge. For more information, call (770) 474-8576.