West Haven locals say Oak Grove Cemetery site of neglect, vandalism

WEST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — West Haven locals who have their loved ones buried at Oak Grove in West Haven tell News 8 the cemetery is neglected.

Brian and Gina Stone are taking it upon themselves to clear the weeds.

“We do this a few times a year because they don’t really maintain it like we want them to,” said Gina.

“It could be maintained a little better, sure it could be but we just try to maintain her parents plots as best we can and we go from there,” said Brian.

Laraine Santiago said the final resting place for her mother, father, son and niece is a disgrace.

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“Usually there’s all stuff hanging on the head stones but we try not to get it that way. We do it ourselves.” said Laraine Santiago.

Santiago’s father was a Korean War Veteran. When she visits her father’s grave she has a hard time finding the plot.

“It makes me feel sad. That’s not right,” said Guillermo Santiago.

Guillermo said the conditions at Oak Grove are unsightly. He occasionally uncovers tombstones of veterans buried by weeds and grass.

“I like to do something for them because they have don’t have anyone to do anything for them, said Guillermo.

And it’s not just the lack of upkeep. Laraine Santiago said vandalism is alive and well at the cemetery.

“I’ve had stuff stolen off the graves. That’s why I come every week or send my nieces or my sisters because stuff will be gone,” said Laraine.

She said religious crosses and decorations she put on the graves are missing. And says there’s no security at night.

“They need to hire people and take care of this and have green grass for people who are laid to rest,” said Laraine.

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