If you believe in heaven, it would be hard not to think Sadie Mitchell and Frank Collins are not gasping in shock right now. Their names were amongst dozens listed on tombstones that turned up in the trash Friday outside of a Manteca home.
“It’s kind of scary,” says Daniel Lopez, the handyman who noticed something odd about the backyard patio in a home off of San Juan Street. “There were 300 plus, I think. Wouldn’t have known it until somebody flipped them over; they looked like bricks.”
But they weren’t bricks — they were tombstones, each one belonging to a deceased person, lying faced down. And, used as tiles to build a backyard patio.
“I called the landlord and the police,” Lopez told FOX40.
Many of the tombstones are dated back to the 1800’s. Neighbors say they’ve been sitting in the backyard for more than 30 years, and throughout the decades, the home has had several owners. This week, the house is for rent.
“Makes you think, how did they get there? Whoever put them there must have known where they came from,” one neighbor said.
Authorities eventually were able to confirm that the gravestones were only temporary markers that had been thrown out once permanent headstones were put in place at Parkview Cemetery.