Community gathers to repair vandalized Bruce Township cemetery

Gravestones toppled, cracked at Bruce Township cemetery

By Lauren Podell - Reporter

BRUCE TOWNSHIP, Mich. - Betsey Ingalls died in 1841, but today, her headstone lays toppled on its side. The Sherman family was laid to rest in 1899, but their solid granite monument is now cracked in half.

That just begins to describe the damage done to a Bruce Township cemetery. 

Saturday the community came together at 9:00 a.m. to make sure what lies beyond the rusted Goodrich Cemetery gate will stand proud once more.

"It's destroyed, it's completely destroyed," said Township Supervisor Richard Cory. 

Cory said the vandals left their destructive mark on the Goodrich Cemetery off of Kidder Road just two weeks ago. Some of the headstones still have fresh cracks at the base.  

"People are calling the township and asking, 'Why', 'why.' That's the big question," Cory said.

More than 40 headstones were destroyed and dismantled, including Chuck Bristol's family plot. 

"My great, great grandfather is buried near the front, his uncle and cousins nearby," said Bristol. "To see all of the stones cracked is just uncalled for."

Husbands, wives and children are buried in the quiet countryside cemetery, which dates back to the 1800s. But that's just the beginning of this lands history. 

"There are five Civil War veterans buried here, and I mean look, their grave stones are destroyed," said Cory.

But for the people who appreciate the history, they have a plan.

One of the people living in this neighborhood has a son in the National Guard and he's recruited members to help repair the damage, along with the varsity football team from Romeo High School.

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