NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Families looking to visit their loved ones’ final resting place were met with downed trees and storm debris Monday.
“I came up to see my dad and my sister over at the VA, and they’ve got it blocked off at the entrance,” said Thomas Greene, whose family members are buried in the National Cemetery in Madison. “There’s trees laid down all over the roads. They’ve got yellow tape.”
Spring Hill Cemetery on Gallatin Pike was also hit hard. Officials estimate roughly 30 trees were toppled over in the storm.
“It hurts you because you think… this is a sacred place, you know?” said Bettie Dever.
Monday afternoon, Dever and her husband set out to leave a little Christmas cheer for their loved ones.
“Put the Christmas trees on our parents’ graves,” said Dever.
Instead, they found storm debris and downed trees scattered all over the Spring Hill private cemetery.
“Those are my grandparents up there,” said Dever. “… and, that big limb, that big pine limb, fell right on top of it.”
The Cookeville couple went grave to grave cleaning as much debris as they could. The two even spent time sprucing up the gravesites of men and women they did not know.
“My husband went around and put some more flags… put them back in the markers, cause I don’t like seeing the American Flag on the ground either,” Dever said.
A somber, yet sentimental attempt to renew a sense of reverence to a place tarnished by disaster. Spring Hill cemetery officials say they are contacting the family members of those whose markers or monuments were impacted by the storm.