Missouri Coroner prepared for flood to disturb bones - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Missouri Coroner prepared for flood to disturb bones

MISSISSIPPI COUNTY, MO (KFVS) -

Officials are trying to identify bones found near the breach of Birds Point Levee, but they say this is something they were expecting prior to the flood.

Mississippi County Coroner Terry Parker says embalmers and funeral directors throughout the state worked with county coroners to come up with a plan of action if the flood disrupted any buried bones. The plan, was for parker to call a disaster relief team to locate and tag the artifacts. Parker says a historical group mapped out every cemetery in the county years ago, something he says was helpful to them.

"We had a solid foundation to go on, we knew where the cemeteries were located, the ones that still had markings, we were very fortunate," said Parker.

Parker says the main goal for a finding like this, is to determine the origin, and then respectfully restore the bones back to the ground.

Morris Griggs' family has a cemetery in the floodway. He says he and his brother have taken care of the cemetery since they were little boys. He says the family was worried about what might happen to the buried deceased during the flooding.

"We had three fresh graves, and that was my only concern was the three fresh ones, that they might float out, but they didn't," said Griggs.

Griggs says he feels very lucky the bones were not disturbed. He says he felt helpless during the flood, since there wasn't anything he could do.

Griggs says there's another family cemetery nearby, and he says that one too, was not disturbed by the flooding.

He says they hope to keep their cemetery in the family for many more years.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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