MAURY COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Maury County Sheriff’s Department is asking for the public’s help in apprehending malicious vandals who desecrated a family cemetery steep in history and powerful memories.

It happened at the Loftin Cemetery in Maury County at 1400 Union Grove Road.

It’s here that between May 13-20 that vandals entered the family-owned cemetery and desecrated dozens of headstones and burial plots.

Edward and Bubba Lee are uncle and nephew, whose family dates back some six generations and 150 years in this sacred place.

Now they want to know who knocked over headstones, broke grave markers, and destroyed powerful symbolism of family.

“I’d ask why,” Edward said.

“I would like to know who done it,” Bubba added.

Every Saturday for the last 25 years, Bubba comes to the family cemetery and maintains the grass and graves. When he came the morning of May 20, he was shocked.

“It was devastating. I started calling people,” he said.

“He was very upset and called me at 6:30,” Edward recalled.

It’s then that the family discovered 27 toppled headstones, broken grave markers, smashed flower vases, and family heirlooms desecrated.

“Well, it is our family. We don’t bother anyone. It is our family; we are just country people and you come out here and see the devastation we saw last Saturday,” Edward said.

Edward lost his wife and many relatives who are now laid to rest here.

“All the Fergusons are in here, six generations,” he said.

The Lees told News 2 the family spent six hours cleaning up and fixing what they could. They then called the Maury County Sheriff’s Office.

“This should be a place of peace. As you heard, the Lee family comes out almost on a daily basis to come out and spend time with their loved ones who passed on, and then they come out and see something like this. It is very troubling,” Maury County Sheriff Bucky Rowland said.

“I hope they are caught and pay the price for what they have done,” Edward added.

The family is putting up a $1,000 reward that leads to an arrest and a conviction for whomever desecrated the cemetery.

If you have any information, you are asked to call the Maury County Sheriff’s Office at 931-388-5151.

The family also plans to put security cameras up in the cemetery, starting Friday, June 2.