Woman wants cemetery to fix grandparents’ ‘unkempt’ gravesite

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NORTHGLENN, Colo. -- A woman in Northglenn reached out to the FOX31 Denver Problem Solvers after she said her grandparents’ gravesite was in bad shape.

“Grandma and grandpa loved to grill,” Mara Blake said while looking at old photos. “They loved to fish even more.”

Blake said her grandparents, Ray and Jerrie Pogue, died when she was a teenager.

“My grandmother was one of my best friends,” she said.

That’s why it upsets Blake so much to see the site, where they rest at Olinger Highland Cemetery in Thornton, unkempt.

“It's my grandparents site in particular," Blake said. “The grass is just as dead as could be, and then it's full of [weeds] as well.”

Blake said every summer, for the past three years, it has been the same fight.

“My grandparents, you know, worked all their lives, and this is what they get,” she said. “So, yeah, it breaks my heart.”

She told the Problem Solvers the cemetery replaced the sod on her grandparents' site twice over the years. But it still sits barren, next to the greener grass of other sites.

“I just want the problem fixed,” she said.

She said she doesn’t know if it’s the trees or the nearby flagpole, a lack of water or the tire tracks she said she often sees leading to the control box nearby.

“You can just see the tire marks over it,” she said. “I don't think they're concerned at all.”

This year, Blake said it has been all promise and no results.

“It's a beautiful cemetery, other than my grandparents' site,” she said.

Blake said she was told that in order to relocate her grandparents' remains to a new site, she would need approval from every living relative, the state health department would get involved, and it would cost thousands of dollars, which she cannot afford.

She would prefer the site be properly taken care of.

The Problem Solvers contacted the cemetery by phone. Initially, a receptionist said no one could speak with the media. While at the gravesite with Blake, an employee came up and shook her hand, offering to sit down with her to discuss this further.

Update

The cemetery responded to the Problem Solvers Thursday afternoon. They said they met with Mara that morning and they are working to find a long-term solution to fix the site.