12 On Your Side: Woman searching for 'missing' great-grandmother's grave

By: Elizabeth Owens Email
By: Elizabeth Owens Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- A woman's quest to learn her family's history has left her asking more questions after visiting the location of her great-grandmother's grave.

Sherri Joyner's great-grandmother was buried in Westview Cemetery more than 80 years ago. She was buried in the old pauper's section, but the family did add a headstone later.

"I think about how she was buried. She wasn't buried in the best way, and then now we come out here, and she is thrown away," Joyner said.

Joyner spent a week searching for her great-grandmother's tombstone in Westview. She even pulled old records that show where her great-grandmother was buried at Westview.

"I've checked all these graves on this side and her headstone is not here," Joyner said.

Joyner remembers visiting the headstone as a little girl. However, the only thing she can find in her great-grandmother's spot is a long dirt path.

"I feel like I'm standing on people's bodies," she said.

Records show other bodies are supposed to be buried near that same dirt path, too. Although Joyner did not find her great-grandmother's headstone, she did find others hidden and forgotten in the woods.

"It seems like they took a bulldozer, pushed all those headstone up over here and tried to clean it up over here and just forget about the people buried here," Joyner said.

"She is just thrown away, it seems like," Joyner said.

City officials say they are looking into the matter and will help Joyner find her great-grandmother's headstone. They also say they plan to clean up that section of Westview.

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