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Roselawn Cemetery apologizing after 'aggressive' spring cleanup

Posted at 10:54 PM, Apr 19, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-20 10:08:37-04

PUEBLO — The Roselawn Cemetery and Funeral Home in Pueblo has apologized in a Facebook post to families after what they call an "aggressive" spring cleanup.

The cleanup was planned for May 1, but this week thousands of headstone decorations were cleared earlier than planned. Belongings were put into large trash bags and left in a pile on the east side of the cemetery for family members to gather.

Rudy Krasovec, the executive director of the cemetery, said they have been lenient about rules regarding decorations. The cemetery's rules and regulations state that "flowers and artificial decorations will be permitted in the cemetery only in approved vases or containers installed by the cemetery." Krasovec said, however, they could have better communicated with families about the early cleanup.

"We got a little bit more aggressive on this one than we had in the past," he said. "We stopped, we backed up. We're going to reassess the whole process to look at what's a better way to be able to take care of this."

Some families with loved ones buried at Roselawn Cemetery said they feel disrespected by the cleanup efforts, some searching for hours to find their belongings in the pile of trash bags.

"They were throwing things in bags, and there was a big, huge pile of stuff, just on the other side of the cemetery. My heart just sank and I almost couldn't breathe for a few minutes," said Amy Torres, whose son is buried at the cemetery.

She said they chose Roselawn Cemetery because of their rules allowing families to personalize tombstones. After this cleanup, she and her husband said they hope they can continue to decorate his spot.

"It might be a little strange to some people that we come out every week, and we clean up his area. But this is all we got of him. This is it," she said.

The Torres' are urging others to clean up their loved ones' areas so this doesn't have to happen again.

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