Veteran organization helps restore local cemetery - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Veteran organization helps restore local cemetery

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The Kentucky Chapter of the National Association of Black Veterans has started a restoration project to give the cemetery the respect it deserves. The Kentucky Chapter of the National Association of Black Veterans has started a restoration project to give the cemetery the respect it deserves.
Rodney Crockett Rodney Crockett
Shedrick Jones Sr. Shedrick Jones Sr.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A place where heroes are laid to rest has been looking less than peaceful. A community cemetery in the Petersburg-Newburgh area needed some TLC and it is getting some help from a veterans organization.

The Petersburg-Newburgh cemetery is the final resting place of many African American veterans. Just like so many cemeteries, maintenance is tough. The Kentucky Chapter of the National Association of Black Veterans has started a restoration project to give the cemetery the respect it deserves.

There is a lot of history at the Petersburg-Newburg Cemetery.

"It dates back to late 1800 to present day," said Steve Williams, chairman of the Petersburg-Newburg Cemetery Committee. Williams said 100 African American veterans are buried at the cemetery.

The Kentucky National Association of Black Veterans (NABVETS) couldn't stand to see the cemetery the way it was.

"The funeral is done, the person has passed on, the memories are still there but, there are still some more honor left," said Veteran Rodney Crockett.

"I'd hope that I would not have to be in a resting place and have water on top of my resting place," said Shedrick Jones Sr., NABVETS Region 6 Commander

"Some of them was blackened, green moss edge of them," said Williams. "It looked like they were worn and dated."

The Kentucky National Association of Black Veterans partnered with Evans Monument Company in Louisville to restore some of the headstones. So far 10 have been cleaned up. The plan is to clean five to 10 a week until they are all restored.

"The headstones have come from day to night," said Williams.

For many of these veterans, they want to give back for those who gave so much to us.

"I didn't pay the ultimate price but, I have artificial limbs, I have reconstructed joints and I have issues," said Jones. "I suffer from depression, PTSD. So, the small role that I can make. This is just a little piece that I can give back."

Giving back, even after so many years, because it's never too late.

"We said we wouldn't leave anybody behind and we don't want to leave them behind," said Jones.

The restoration project is being sponsored by the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs. Metro Council President Jim King and Councilwoman Barbara Shanklin's district have also provided money to help restore the cemetery. 

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