It was an unpleasant discovery for the mayor of the village of Lebret, Sask. on Tuesday.
Ralph Blondeau, who’s also the caretaker for the local church, was driving to pick up his morning paper when he noticed something wrong with the village’s cemetery.
“I could see two monuments lying down and I thought, ‘My God, what’s going here?’” he said from his home in Lebret, located 80 kilometres east of Regina.
Blondeau continued to drive around the cemetery, seeing in total 15 headstones, primarily older ones with crosses on the top, toppled over and broken in an act of vandalism he thinks occurred Monday night.
“It had to be fairly husky guys doing this,” he said, pointing to the sizeable headstones.
Blondeau was shocked by the disrespectful act, adding that Lebret’s cemetery had never been vandalized before.
“Here these people, they done their work during their life, they’re supposed to be resting and now ignorance is trying to take over,” he said. “What’s wrong with these people? Let these people rest in peace.”
He said the offenders were lucky he didn’t catch them in the act.
“I don’t know what I would have done to them if I had have caught them but, the thing is, why are they doing these things?”
Blondeau said no one, including RCMP, has any suspects in mind. He’s hoping someone will hear something via word of mouth or on social media.
In the meantime, the church’s cemetery fund will cover the expense to repair the headstones, which need to be lifted by a truck back onto their base. Blondeau estimated it will cost $1,500 to repair all 15 headstones.
The church council is also discussing how to prevent future acts of vandalism from happening. Blondeau said he doesn’t know what measures they’ll take, if any.
The Fort Qu’Appelle RCMP have said they have started an investigation into mischief. If you do have information you’re asked to call the RCMP at 306-332-2222 or Crime Stoppers at 1-877-222-8477.