Reason for extra headstone still a mystery

Saturday, June 14, 2008
KIT DOYLE ~ There were two headstones for Virginia Allcorn at Lorimier Cemetery in Cape Girardeau, until the second was removed Thursday from an unused plot.

Neither Ford and Sons Funeral Home nor officials from Lorimier Cemetery know how two identical headstones for Virginia Allcorn were placed 100 yards apart.

Allcorn's husband, Bob, ordered a headstone with his wife before she died of cancer in January 2006. But her headstone was not cut right, he said. He ordered another, and that was the one placed at Virginia Allcorn's grave.

Allcorn said he paid $600 for each headstone. The incorrect stone was nonreturnable, so he paid a $200 re-engraving fee so it could be donated to a family that could not afford a headstone.

But neither the cemetery nor the funeral home know why the stone intended for donation was placed on a space purchased by someone else.

"We wouldn't have put a stone down unless somebody told us to do so," said Doc Ford of the funeral home, referring to the cemetery.

Rob Smithey, a maintenance worker at Lorimier Cemetery, said he had no record of a request for the second stone to be placed.

Ford and Smithey both had no explanation for the confusion other than miscommunication and poor paperwork. The funeral home had no file on hand for the second, incorrect stone, but Ford said officials from his funeral home would drive out to the cemetery Friday afternoon to collect the second stone and set it aside for donation. The stone was removed from the space Thursday afternoon by a cemetery crew.

335-6611, extension 197

A grave mistake

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