JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office confirms bones found at a construction site in North Jacksonville Tuesday belonged to a cemetery.
Late Thursday afternoon crews uncovered a marked headstone. According to JSO, the headstone was found to have a name and military rank inscribed on it. JSO told Action News Jax they are working to find the family members to notify them of the findings.
Through JSO’s investigation, they discovered that the dirt was coming from a private property off Eastport Road, which was a documented cemetery.
After finding the headstone, recovery operations ceased to ensure that the remains were handled in the most sensitive and appropriate manner, according to JSO.
Neighbors near the Eastport Cemetery told Action News Jax they just want to know how it happened.
“If it was one of my loved ones, I would be kind of upset and just want answers about how it happened,” said Alicia Fisher.
She lives near Eastport Road where excavation crews just uncovered a marked headstone, engraved with a name and military rank.
According to the Work Progress Administration Veteran’s Grave Registration for 1940-1941 in Duval County, the site is confirmed as a documented cemetery (page 95). The Florida Department of Transportation and the State Archaeologist was notified and the processing of the rest of the remains will be handled by State officials and affiliated experts.
“I think they need a proper burial. I really do. I mean, you’re talking about veterans here who served the country,” says Fisher.
Neighbors said the area was once called Pollytown and we learned it used to be an African American community.
Many have questions as to how this went under the radar for so long, especially since it was documented.
“How do you have a business on top of holy land, or holy ground? They might want to relocate and actually leave them resting where they are,” adds Fisher.
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