Alabama man fights county judge, city officials to keep wife buried in front yard

Posted at 6:00 PM, Aug 19, 2012
and last updated 2012-08-19 19:53:48-04

A woman’s wish before her death in 2009 was to be buried outside their home. Her husband did just that, but now a county judge and city officials want James Davis to move his wife’s grave site.

While state health officials say family burial plots aren’t uncommon in Alabama, city officials worry about the precedent set by allowing a grave on a residential lot on one of the main streets through town. They say state law gives the city some control over where people bury their loved ones and have cited concerns about long-term care, appearance, property values and the complaints of some neighbors.

“We’re not in the 1800s any longer,” said city attorney Parker Edmiston. “We’re not talking about a homestead, we’re not talking about someone who is out in the country on 40 acres of land. Mr. Davis lives in downtown Stevenson.”

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