2 years after cemetery shutdown, families still seek answers

Published 7:15 am Monday, April 11, 2016

BARTLETT, Tenn. — Jackie Hughes longs to grieve over her sister’s death in simple ways: visit her grave, lay out flowers, and pour a can of Bud Light — her sister’s favorite — on the spot. But three years after Tawana Hillard’s death, Hughes hasn’t been able to spill a drop.

Hillard is missing. Since her graveside service at Galilee Memorial Gardens near Memphis in 2012, her body has been lost, along with hundreds of others whose remains were entrusted to the cemetery.

“I want to be able to walk in, to put flowers down, to just kneel and talk with her, whatever,” Hughes says. Instead she leafs through photo albums at home, smiling as she remembers Saturday mornings spent talking with her sister about their love of blues music.

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