SACRAMENTO — A Sacramento cemetery was left to pick up the pieces after someone broke in last week and destroyed several headstones.
Cemeteries are meant to be a place to honor and remember loved ones who’ve passed but a vandal had other plans for the Sacramento Historic City Cemetery Thursday night.
The person responsible knocked over gravestones and smashed some into pieces. They even scrawled messages in bright colors.
“Of course it’s disrespectful to the dead but also to the living, to the family members and community who value this place,” said volunteer Eric Bradner.
The cemetery manager said they’re dealing with thousands of dollars worth of damage. The gravestones date back to the 19th century, so when one is damaged it’s not easily repaired or replaced.
“When they get broken they have to be put back together like a jigsaw puzzle,” Bradner said. “You can try to repair it but you can’t put it back together in its original state once it’s been vandalized like that.”
That’s why volunteers said it feels like the vandal erased a piece of history.
“It’s a beautiful place. It belongs to the people,” said visitor Sally Freedlander. “It’s a shame. It’s really, really sad.”
The destroyed graves belonging to volunteer firefighters from the 1800s.
“To see historic graves vandalized particularly those of firemen, it’s heartbreaking,” Freedland expressed. “Those are the people that serve all of us.”
The cemetery filed a police report and the business across the street from the cemetery has surveillance footage of a possible suspect.
As the investigation continues, cemetery volunteers are shifting their focus to picking up the pieces so the firefighters can rest in peace once more.
“It will be fixed. It will be corrected,” Bradner stated.
If you know anything about this crime, call the Sacramento Police Department.