Vandals damage headstones in Margaretville Cemetery
By Brian Sweeney
Vandals damaged a dozen gravestones in the Margaretville Cemetery last week.
Village workers arrived at the site on the morning of August 7 and discovered the damage. Officials said that all three gates to the cemetery had been locked and the vandals cut through a lock on the upper gate to gain entry.
The damage reportedly occurred some time Monday night or early Tuesday. The vandalized headstones were located in the oldest section of the cemetery.
Village officials and others were dismayed by the discovery. Among those most upset by the senseless destruction was Diane Galusha, president of the Historical Society of the Town of Middletown.
“Cemetery desecration is unfathomable and always disturbing. But coming on the heels of our wonderful Living History Cemetery Tour, enjoyed by 130 people June 30, and just a week after the headstone inventory of this cemetery was posted online for genealogists and researchers to access, this outrageous disrespect is especially upsetting,” remarked Ms. Galusha.
Margaretville Mayor Bill Stanton is offering a $100 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the vandalism. Catskill Mountain News Publisher Dick Sanford has offered an additional $100 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the people responsible for the damage.
The state police are investigating the incident. Anyone with information regarding the destruction of cemetery property is welcome to contact Henry Friedman at the Margaretville Department of Public Works or the village office at 586-4418.