Family says cemetery botched loved one's burial

ATLANTA — A local family demanded answers in person Monday over what they say was a botched burial.

The family claims that a northwest Atlanta cemetery moved the body of a family member to make room for another gravesite.%



Channel 2’s Audrey Washington was at the cemetery Monday for the opening of the vault, but reported that it did nothing to calm the concerns of the Coleman family.

Cynthia Coleman said she buried her father about three weeks ago in the tiger section of Lincoln Cemetery in northwest Atlanta.

"I think they are doing (something), burying on top of people,” Coleman said.

She told Channel 2 Action News on Sunday that she was shocked to find an exposed vault at the site.


She believes it's the same one that was used to lower her father's casket. Now she thinks the cemetery moved her father without the family's consent.

"He was right next to Mr. Curtis Sr., and now he's down next to one of my friends who's buried here, so how did that happen?" Coleman said.

"I brought my guys out there to take that lid off to show them that it's a brand-new vault. That grave has never been disturbed," Darrell Patrick Morgan, the vice president of Lincoln Family Group, told Washington.

Morgan said the grave with the empty vault was opened for another funeral and that Coleman is buried nearby.

The family isn't buying it. They gave Washington a picture on Monday showing flowers that mark where their father was buried.

Morgan told Washington that the family is mistaken.

"The picture clearly shows that Mr. Coleman's flowers are to the right in the middle of the grave," Morgan said.

"My issue is I want to find out where he is. I don't care if we have to dig him back up," Coleman said.

The family said they are willing to pay in order to have Coleman's casket exhumed.

The head of the cemetery said he will do whatever it takes to prove that the body is where it's supposed to be.

Family members said they can't rest, until they know that their loved one is truly at rest.