Letter to the Editor: Concerns about Conditions at Shawsheen Cemetery

September 25, 2020

Submitted by Joan Ogg

On Monday, September 14, 2020, I had an appointment in Massachusetts.  On the way home, I stopped at Shawsheen Cemetery to pay my respects to my family, interred there; longtime residents of Bedford.

I was appalled at the condition of my family’s gravesites (12 total) at Shawsheen Cemetery.  There was no grass and weeds had taken over.  The graves hadn’t been weeded (pictures appear below).  Last Spring I made my stance well known on the Bedford site on Facebook and I wasn’t alone.

My family paid for perpetual care and members of my family are the ones caring for the graves.  We have pulled weeds, seeded, watered, and even lifted sunken foot markers.  This is inexcusable.

The Shawsheen Cemetery in years past was magnificently kept and the folks buried there were respected.  Today, planters are mowed down (when they mow) and broken planters are left at the grave.

Many of us have complained to the DPW; and at first, we thought with the new Cemetery manager things were getting done and looking somewhat better at the end of the last year.  Although we have had dry conditions this summer and the Covid-19 epidemic, there is still no excuse for the cemetery to look as deplorable as it does.

This is why I am bringing it to the attention of The Bedford Citizen for public awareness because things need to change in the town starting with Shawsheen Cemetery.  With all the money collected in property taxes in that town—where is the money going that is budgeted for the cemetery?

The Town needs to pay attention and start caring and paying respect to the forefathers who made the town of Bedford.

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