Remains of what Ken Colbert says are the tombstones of his family can be found on farmland near the intersection of Highway 65 and Nesbit Road.
The bodies of Patrick Calvert, Sarah Martin, and their son Robert were buried on the farmland in the 1800’s, but the family now says the burial site has been damaged by the current landowner. The family wants to resolve the issue by moving the bodies to a nearby family cemetery.
“This is the only thing that’s left out of the entire tombstone,” says Ken Colbert, family member. “There were three of them here. This is where their home was. This is where they’re buried right here at this intersection.”
But this could soon change. Colbert and his family plan on exhuming and relocating the bodies of his fifth Great-Grandfather, Grandmother, and Uncle.
“For whatever reason, the current farmer did desecrate the graves, they took the tombstones out, and they planted crops on the family. And It’s disheartening,” says Colbert.
The family owned the land up until 1953 when the Scheller family started farming the land. When the current owner took over in 2006, Colbert says he was supposed to continue caring for the cemetery and tombstones.
Instead he says the farmer was tilling over the burial site damaging the tombstones, but now he says his family has a tough decision to make.
“It’s just unfortunate that we’ve been put in this position right now that somebody would not be respectful of another family,” says Colbert.
Herman Scheller, former farmer of the land, says the current farmer was aware a family was buried on the land.
“There were whole tombstones and I mean it was like the old-fashioned, the grey tombstones, and they were all laying flat,” say Scheller. “The farmer who got the ground, he actually stayed off the cemetery a few years and then he just kept inching his way over on it and on it and the last few years he worked up the whole cemetery.”
The Colbert family plans to get a court order to relocate the bodies to a family cemetery up the road, but that won’t be cheap. The process of exhuming the bodies and replacing the tombstones could cost nearly $35,000.
“As a family we’re offended that this has taken place and we want to resolve this and the best way to do this is to relocate them to our family cemetery,” says Colbert.
The link to the GoFundMe Page can be found here.