Volunteer group cleaning up a forgotten cemetery

Groups of people gathered to clean up a forgotten cemetery. One man started the cleanup on his own. We told you about his story back in October and it caught a non-profit group's attention. Saturday morning more than 25 volunteers got to work to preserve a piece of Sanford's history. 
"It's all been abandoned that's why we're out here, just so many military graves out here and it's kind of upsetting,” said Bob Pizzurro with the Seminole County Sheriff Search and Rescue Team. That’s just one of the groups that volunteered their time with the cleanup efforts.
The Lake Mary Boy Scout Troop 507 also pitched in to help.
"With the boy scouts, it's another big group to help the project out and I know there are a lot of things we can do,” said 14 year old Christopher D’hedouville with the boy scouts.
A nonprofit group called the "New Sanford Initiative" spearheaded Saturday’s cleanup at the Page Jackson Cemetery. It sits behind the Sanford Municipal Cemetery off of West 25th Street.
“I’ve been working hard to try and get groups out here,” said the nonprofit group’s founder Courtney Lanier.
Lanier said he saw our news coverage a few months ago with Tom Ward, a history buff who's trying to save the cemetery.
"Saw the news on fox, a friend had tagged me in it and I saw Mr. Ward out here by himself doing a little bit at a time and I said there's a way, giving back to Sanford,” said Lanier.
Most of the people buried out here were African-American born in the 1800s. Some famous people are buried here too.  
"One famous person who's out here is Mahammad Ali's trainer Bundini Brown. He came up with the phrase float like a butterfly sting like a bee, he's buried over there. He's a Sanford resident,” said Lanier.
This cleanup project hits especially home for Courtney Lanier.
"I have a great, great, grandfather buried out here,” he told FOX35.
Every two weeks they will be out there until everything is cleaned up, graves are properly maintained, and families will have a clean place to visit their loved ones. If you want more information on how you can help visit this website.
Up Next:

  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories You May Be Interested In – includes Advertiser Stories