Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Scrubbing Veterans' Headstones Clean, Uncovering Heroes

From: Frank J.
Sent: February 9, 2021
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Subject: Fw: Scrubbing Veterans' Headstones Clean, Uncovering Heroes


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A towering oak tree draped with Spanish moss offers little relief from the Florida sun as Andrew Lumish scrubs grime from the headstone of a World War I veteran.

"It's pretty messy, pretty dirty," he says. "We're pulling out dirt and biological material that's been here since 1921. So, a lot of elbow grease here."

Lumish, who has so far cleaned about 600 veterans' headstones, says he restores them out of respect for those who died and to learn about how they lived.

Among the stories he's unearthed: a veteran born in 1840 who was shot and returned to combat with a bullet in his lower back, a Civil War veteran wounded at the Battle of Shiloh and a 21-year-old whose headstone reads, "You have died for the world, but not for your parents."

Woodlawn Cemetery dates back to 1888, and is just blocks from Tampa's downtown skyscrapers. The burial ground houses the remains of soldiers who fought in conflicts from the Civil War to Vietnam. Many of the graves have been darkened by mold and mildew and some of the names inscribed in stone are unreadable. ...

Source: NPR

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