Family: Grandma's grave was disturbed

Posted at 7:13 PM, Feb 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-22 19:25:47-05

CINCINNATI -- When the family of Marian Lewis visited her grave in West Price Hill to celebrate what would have been her 106th birthday, they left distraught.

The family plot, where three generations of family members were already buried, was disturbed, said Kendra Shorter, Lewis' great granddaughter. They found the vault she was buried in sticking out of the ground.

"We’re trying to come back and remember her and honor her memory when she turns 106 and this is what we came to," she said. "We’re really upset. I felt like it disrespected our family. It disrespected our great grandmothers memory."

Lewis was buried at Union Baptist Cemetery in West Price Hill. The family has owned their plot since 1930, said Veronica Holiday, another granddaughter of Lewis.

"I understand this is a historic cemetery," Holiday said. "Somebody should be taking care of it."

Lewis, who lives in Indianapolis, said she has contacted the City of Cincinnati, the NAACP and the ACLU to voice concerns.

"I told them, I was going to make a lot of noise about this," she said. "It's not right."

When the family contacted Union Baptist, church employees said nothing happened to the grave. Union Baptist Church did not comment to WCPO - 9 On Your Side.

"Was there tampering? Was someone buried on top of her?" Shorter said. "We’re concerned and we want answers.”