RESTING SPOT: Raechel Summers feared her grandmother, Ramona Mary Williams, would not be buried alongside her husband and parents when she discovered the wrong plot had been dug the morning of her funeral.Photo Amber Hooker / The Morning Bulletin
RESTING SPOT: Raechel Summers feared her grandmother, Ramona Mary Williams, would not be buried alongside her husband and parents when she discovered the wrong plot had been dug the morning of her funeral.Photo Amber Hooker / The Morning Bulletin Amber Hooker

Council digs wrong plot as family arrives to bury beloved

RAECHEL Summers suffered a heartbreaking shock when she arrived with her mother at the Mount Morgan Cemetery.

Only hours before she would lay her grandmother, Ramona Mary Williams, to rest in the family plot with her husband Cecil Williams and parents, Raechel was devastated to discover the wrong grave had been dug.

Distraught, she phoned the Rockhampton Regional Council, who Raechel claims told the family to proceed with the funeral, and when available, someone would come to bury her grandmother in the correct site - the next one over.

"We said that was not acceptable and they better get someone up here ASAP," Raechel said.

"There ended up being a contractor come up about half-past-one, quarter-to-two and we got to bury Grandma."

Raechel said in the end, the ceremony was more intimate, as she and her family were able to lower her grandmother themselves, and give her a "proper Scottish send-off".

But the bottom line was "it shouldn't have happened".

Rockhampton Regional Council chief executive officer Evan Pardon said the incident last week was a result of an error in historical records.

"We have spoken to the family and sincerely apologised for any distress which may have been caused - it was a genuine mistake," Mr Pardon said.

"We relied on historical records to determine the grave site which unfortunately were not accurate for this particular site.

"As soon as it was brought to our attention we arranged to have the correct site prepared."

Mr Pardon said a council officer remained with the family until the burial was complete and where possible council will confirm burial sites with family members.

But Raechel said more needs to be done at the historic site and hopes that her family's experience may incite action to correctly mark the plots.

"I want it sorted so nobody else goes through what we did and to make sure they are not digging up somebody else's grave," Raechel said.

"And make sure they are not putting somebody on top of somebody else; that would be devastating."



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