Volunteers Clean Up Cemetery

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NEWPORT TOWNSHIP -- Overgrown grass and petty crime have caused problems at one cemetery in Luzerne County.

But some folks spruced up the final resting place just in time for Memorial Day.

The grass is trimmed, and the grave markers at veterans' tombstones have been straightened at the Newport Township Cemetery near Nanticoke, but a few days ago, it looked a bit different.

"It was really high, the grass, and it needed help so we went down and cut it," said Joseph Fox of Nanticoke.

Fox and his brothers spent this past weekend at the cemetery helping other volunteers mow the grass, haul away leaves and tree branches, and spruce up the headstones, some of which date back to the 1800s.

Christiane Fox is the president of the Newport Township Cemetery Association.

She said the place has seen some difficult days.

The cemetery association has little money left in the bank, and most of the fencing around the property is still missing.

Newport Township Police arrested Scott Wylie last year for stealing 500 feet of that fence.

The cemetery association still doesn't have enough money to replace it.

"There is a lot of old tombstones, that`s why. We have family buried down. We would hate to see it be considered a forgotten cemetery," said Christiane Fox.

Fox said that's why her family helped clean up the cemetery, so other families can pay their respects this Memorial Day weekend.