A non-profit group that traps wild hogs to provide meat for veterans hopes to solve the hog nuisance that’s caused extensive damage to a Dallas cemetery.
An online post from the Lincoln Memorial Cemetery in far southeast Dallas blamed the hogs for digging up the soil around graves throughout the property on Dowdy Ferry Road.
The damage disturbed relatives of the deceased.
All three of Earline Caldwell’s sons are buried at the cemetery after tragedy took two of them within minutes of one another in 2018 and then the third one passed away months later in 2019.
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“That was my whole family, that was my everything laying out there,” she said.
Now, the condition of the graves makes her recall the original burials.
“You pay your money for this peaceful place, and this is what you get,” Caldwell said.
Bridgett Anderson’s grandmother has been at Lincoln Memorial for more than 20 years. She too is now heartbroken over the condition of the grave.
“I have been out there several times and they're supposed to fix it. They have not fixed it yet,” Anderson said.
Wild hogs can weigh up to 300 pounds and they multiply fast. The area along the Trinity River is hog heaven for breeding pigs.
With proper food and water, they reproduce up to three times a year with 10 or more piglets in each litter according to Chris Matthews, President of the group ‘Hogs for a Cause Texas.’
He said the hog population along the Trinity River beside the cemetery has likely been growing for years, explaining occasional damage that relatives reported in the past, that has greatly increased this spring.
“The headstones being rooted up and the sites being rooted up are the hogs looking for grubs,” he said. “They're always going to pose a problem and the only solution to that is trapping.”
His group set several traps at the cemetery Tuesday, including a large corral with gates that close remotely after a large number of animals enter.
“I do believe we’re going to get most of them trapped out of the area,” Matthews said.
Attention to the problem was encouraging to relatives but they still want answers from the cemetery about repairs to the graves.
“I feel like, Lincoln should have told us what was going on,” Caldwell said.
Bridgett Anderson said she still has trouble believing wild pigs are to blame for all the damage she has seen.
“We trust Lincoln with our loved ones so they need to be at peace,” Anderson said.
The general manager at Lincoln Memorial Cemetery did not return a message Tuesday.