Gravestones sink into ground at Pomona cemetery after recent heavy storms

POMONA, Calif. (KABC) -- After a series of storms swept through the Southland, gravestones began sinking into the ground at a Pomona cemetery.

Chino resident Roy Lopez said he visits Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery every week and has done so for more than a decade. He said he's been shocked over what he's seen the last few times he's visited.

"Some in the ground were sinking in and the new grass they put in, it caved in maybe about 10 to 12 inches," he said.

The ground beneath many grave markers gave way, causing the stones to shift, sink or fall into the open cavities below.

Lopez said he first noticed the markers after the recent storms and immediately notified cemetery management.

"They said that they don't have enough personnel to do all the work - they only have 4 or 5 groundskeepers," he said.

The 40-acre property is considered one of the oldest large Catholic cemeteries in Southern California, according to the Holy Cross website.

The Los Angeles Archdiocese issued the following statement:

"The recent heavy rains that we have experienced in Southern California have caused unforeseen damage. As is our policy, groundskeepers at the cemetery have been working diligently to repair the graves that show signs of damage. Repairs are ongoing, weather permitting."

The statement went on to say that it is the only cemetery that has reported damage. Lopez, 74, hopes the repairs will be done in a timely manner so that he can get back to visiting the graves of his son and wife of 45 years.

"When I want to go see my wife's stone. I want to see something beautiful, something that was well taken care of," he said.
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