Md. cemetery holds lottery-style drawing for recovered vases

- Workers at a Charles County cemetery are being criticized for a video they posted on Facebook.

The recording showed staff at Trinity Memorial Gardens holding a lottery-style drawing to decide which families will have their vases replaced. It comes five weeks after nearly 100 bronze vases were stolen from graves at the cemetery.

“I just think it's reprehensible that a business, a place, that they would post something like that is just ludicrous,” said a woman who wanted to remain anonymous.

The woman said she was in fear of retaliation and did not want her face shown on television. She said she has several family members and loved ones at the cemetery in Waldorf, Maryland.

In an interview with FOX 5’s Tisha Lewis, the woman said she was appalled when she saw video on Facebook showing Trinity workers pulling names to determine whose vases will be replaced.

“The families deserve closure. The families deserve their loved ones' remains and their grave sites to be treated with respect and not desecrated and that they would treat it as a lottery is just ridiculous,” said the woman.

Cemetery manager Gail Manuel said Trinity only recovered nine vases. Manuel said she posted the taping in the spirit of transparency.

She also pointed out that there are 10,000 people buried at Trinity and only four comments scrutinizing the Facebook post. One person felt the video of the lottery was more disturbing than that actual theft of the vases.

The controversial post and video was removed Friday night.

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