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MEMPHIS, TN -- A Memphis man was shocked to find more than one dozen tombstones in his backyard. Now, he is making it his mission to find the families to which they belong.
Jason Blackburn unearthed 13 headstones in his backyard this weekend.
It all began when he decided to landscape the area.
"They were buried in the dirt," explained Blackburn.
He first noticed a number engraved in the corner of a white slab of stone buried behind his Overton Park area home.
When he turned it over, he realized it was a tombstone.
"I followed it around and found 13 were around the edge of the backyard," he said.
His mind started reeling.
"One of your thoughts is, ‘Are there people buried in my backyard? Was this an old cemetery?'" Blackburn pondered.
As he uncovered head stone after head stone, he imagined the lives of the people etched in the stones, the people they left behind, and that pulled at his heart strings.
"One was a three-month-old baby and was the daughter of someone in the military," he explained.
All of the names on the head stones dug up appeared to be members of the military or family members of the military. They are solid marble and could weigh as much as 300 pounds each.
"This is not where they should be. So if there's a family member out there that knows some of these people, I'd like for them to be aware," Blackburn said.
He looked up the names on the Internet and tracked the tombstones to the Memphis National Cemetery.
What began as an eerie discovery has turned into an unsettling riddle Blackburn feels compelled to solve.
Blackburn's landscaping project is on hold.
Meanwhile, the Memphis National Cemetery is very concerned.
They will use all their resources to investigate his grave discovery.
When the cemetery checks into the head stones this week, they will uncover all 13 names.