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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Twenty-eight days after the owner of Calvary Cemetery promised families their loved ones’ finally resting place would be cleaned up, the mess remains.

Monday grass was still uncut and overgrown. So now it looks like the City of Wilmington may takeover the clean-up.

City spokeswoman Malissa Talbert said the property has been re-inspected and is still out of compliance, although it looks like a little bit of clean-up has been done.

Talbert said the city has begun fining owner Jack Krupicka $100 a day. She said as of Monday, the city was also preparing to get price quotes for the clean-up costs. A lien will be taken out on the property to recoup the city’s costs, if it cannot get the issue resolved with Krupicka.

Comment on this Story

  • Save Calvary Cemetery

    No, Oakdale does not. It is a “White” only cemetery and the “colored” cemetery, Pine Forest which is adjacent of it is filled up. It is a much greater expense to bury in Greenlawn. Most African Americans like to be buried in their communities just like Native Americans and if it’s not a private family cemetery, yes, Calvary is our ONLY OPTION. Most elderly African Americans have already paid for their burial plots years ago and most of the time their wishes are to be buried by family members that are buried at our cemetery.

  • Guest2014

    I am curious about something you stated: “We as an African American community only have one option and that is Calvary”

    Does this mean that Oakdale or Greenlawn will not accept African-American’s for burial?

  • guest 1234

    It took 28 days for this to FINALLY start the slide off of pg 1!

    How about look at something more worthwhile – like how many felony offenders or repeat offenders are being given low to zero bail, and being pushed right back out the door on probation, only to commit more crimes? Thats news! And it will probably keep maybe one person from being a permanent member of the Calvary Cemetery.

  • 4253

    OMG … The suspense is killing me! … Please, please, please WWAY, give us a hint of what exciting new development we can expect tomorrow! … Will the fine be even bigger? … Will it be bigger by another $100? … I haven’t seen this much excitement since your last reporter left and you ran the story for a gazillion days!

  • SaveCalvaryCemetery

    First of all, this is not something that has just happened overnight. We have given Jack time and numerous opportunities to remedy the problems that exist at the cemetery. Many complaints were also sent to the NC Cemetery Commission. So far, all he has gotten is a slap on the hand. We’re talking about problems since 2009. We shouldn’t have to go out to the cemetery and cut grass, repair broken headstones, try to find missing headstones, pick up trash and debris…that is what we paid him for. I AM going to play the “race” card since someone mentioned it. We tried to give him the benefit of the doubt at one time but it has started to seem as if race IS playing a factor. You don’t see Oakdale or Greenlawn in this type of condition. We as an African American community only have one option and that is Calvary. Our oldest African American cemetery is Pine Forest which is adjacent to Oakdale and it is filled up. So maybe he thought that we were a bunch of ignorant “Blacks” that were doing nothing but blowing a bunch of hot air and that nothing would be said about the way he kept an ole BLACK cemetery, because it was in a BLACK neighborhood. He thought no one cared. Sorry Jack! You are sadly mistaken. I don’t know how some of you that have left so many callous remarks can say that this is not important. It is important to us and we are somewhat pleased that the city has started to fine him after 5 years. We hope that someone with some morals will take over the cemetery and if not we are prepared to move forward. You have no idea what it is like to have to go out there to visit your mother and find that her grave has been vandalized and your uncle that lies right next to her has had the metal plate that was on top of his grave, stolen. Or go out there to visit your grandmother and you can’t find her grave because of the overgrown grass. And when you attempt to weed eat around her grave you are literally bitten by all the ants. Calvary is suppose to be a place of beauty, respect, and dignity. It is not and the ones that have loved ones there are having to grieve all over again. Oh, and did I mention that he supposedly only buries remains 4ft. down? Yea, so before you pass judgment on our cemetery in our community, think for a minute about how you would feel if this was someone you loved that was laid to rest there. We are grateful for any publicity that our cemetery gets. We thank WWAY for getting the news out to our elderly community and even people that don’t live here in NHC. We are ready and waiting for progress to be made and as I mentioned, we will prevail in our efforts.

  • sue

    How many days will WWAY run the same story? Changing only the $$ amount does not make a new story!!! I don’t understand how or why you have such problems finding news that is of actual interest or importance in a community the size of Wilmington/New Hanover. Is there a problem with the news director? Acabre the reporters seriously lacking in basic journalism skills/knowledge of this community? Do you not have enough funding to employ actual reporters? I come to this site to find out what is going on in the community. Unfortunately, what I get (especially on week-ends) is news about the World, the US, the State. I can get all that on the internet. Many of the stories you do “report” on appear to be nothing more than posted press releases (written by the police, city, county and other agencies! So many issues are impacting the Wilmington area right now that I just can’t believe that WWAY would run a “dead horse” story for this many days! I believe that you owe it to everyone in this community to re-examine your whole approach to LOCAL NEWS REPORTING.

  • SurfCityTom

    there are statutes in place for situations like this.

    The city must provide the property owner with a detailed summary of required work.

    Before it can dispatch a work crew, it must give him 1 final opportunity to address the issues and correct them.

    Once it dispatches a crew, it sends the property owner a bill and requires payment within a set period of time.

    If not paid, the property has a lien placed on it.

    Then, the lien is treated in the same manner as unpaid property taxes.

    An attempt must be made to collect. Public notice of a court hearing must be made. A magistrate or clerk of the court must rule on the legalities. Once approved, further notice is required. Then a sale on the courthouse steps at which anyone can bid to acquire the property.

    That will take a few months.

  • guesty

    It is the simple fact they are not getting what they paid for.

  • portcity

    Hard times…This is a message for the owner or any relatives of loved ones buried in cemetery. I have a mower a weed eater and a couple gallons of fuel. Feel free to leave a post on here and I will set up a time and place for you to borrow my equipment.

  • Geri Anderson

    Do we have any idea what’s up with this owner. Has he fallen on hard times? If this is the case, then there is definitely a problem because the City adding on $100 penalty charges is only going to make matters worse. If he can’t afford to clean it up he sure won’t be able to pay these fines. Then what? The City will slap a lien on the property which this owner also won’t be able to afford, oh, I get it! Then the City must WANT this Cemetery property! Yes? No? Well, then I don’t get it. Why can’t the City just have it cleaned up and then set up a way for him to pay that instead of piling on all these fines? I find that really unconscionable and think maybe someone should try to gather up a group of volunteers to clean up the Cemetery and then perhaps the families of those buried there will be willing to get together once or twice a month and have a clean-up party. I’d be happy to volunteer to help with the initial clean-up! Anyone else? Post a tweet and share with me!

  • guest 1234

    It was news, a month ago. Now its like a scab, just needs to go. Sure, if WWAY were actively trying to investigate and pursue this issue and HELP the families, then it would be news. But a daily countdown and mentioning fines does jack. The guy isn’t doing anything, and this hasn’t pushed him obviously.

    What I think is going on is that sadly, someone on the WWAY staff has a family member there and they are using this for personal gain, and to “help” others. With all the issues going on in Wilmington and New Hanover County, WWAY chose this? I don’t think so. There are way more pressing issues that benefit the public more. This is a scam personal issue, not “journalism”.

  • Sharron Cain

    We are not mutts, we are human beings that deserve what we paid for. No we are not going to clean the cemetery. We paid for perpetual care and that’s what we deserve. Actually the time I check mutts had more rights than humans. May God have mercy on all the negative and derogatory comments from such people. Remember about Karma you will eat those words. Cowards that hide behind words. Disclose your identity.

  • portcity1984

    Well if my relatives were buried here I wouldn’t wait on the owner (who obviously doesn’t care and will probably have fines reduced or not even pay them)to clean up the mess. If relatives cared SOOO much they wouldn’t let it get that bad in the first place. One man would not disgrace my families resting place. It looks like posting the article everyday and complaining ALOT is helping to resolve the issue. My father is buried on a plot that is maintained but It doesn’t stop me from going out and cleaning up every few weeks! Like I said before if your not willing to help fix the problem don’t cry about it for years!!

  • new story?

    I’m going to go ahead and write this story for you for the next week…Fine goes up to $300…$400..$500…$600…$700. That’s your headline for the next 5 days unless something CHANGES. A fine that owner will probably never have to pay. Until then write about real news please. I’m surprised the RACE card hasn’t been played yet since owner is white….

  • guesty

    You “thought” it was supposed to cover something and I bet in your paperwork there were listed exclusions. In this case, the families paid for grounds maintenance, upkeep and cleaning and they are not getting it.

  • portcity

    There has been more than a few times Ive been told that my warranty didnt cover what I thought it should. I wasnt happy about it but i didnt have to walk because i fixed the car myself. Didnt cry about it either because it wasnt going to help the situation. I enjoyed the article the first few times now its just taking up space. I knew 18 days ago that there was a fine coming. Let me know when the problem is actually solved.

  • guest 1234

    I did not call the family mutts, I recommended “let some mutt family complain on the cops, show a cute kitten, ANYTHING”. I say this because articles will appear on this site lambasting local LEO efforts and actions. So, if the shoe fits…

    And sure, you “deserve” what you pay for. But its obvious that you’re putting your money before your respect of your family member in that plot. If you cleaned your plot today, wouldn’t he still be responsible for it? Yes. You’re just trying to make a point, at your family members expense. So,(sarcastically) I have the utmost respect for you and your actions. Good luck with letting this article do your work for you.

  • Wilmington Observer

    You are 100% correct, this article is taking up space. But, the article is locally relevant. I would much rather see an article of local relevance “taking up space” than a cut & paste news article written by a reporter in another state regarding something that has absolutely no relevance or interest to the readers in Southeastern North Carolina.

    Wilmington Observer

  • guesty

    So if you were to buy an extended warranty on a vehicle and had something break but the warranty that is supposed to cover the expense didn’t pay, you would be ok? You paid for the warranty and expect it to cover the cost of repair, right? Or would you go buy the parts and just do it yourself? These people paid for care of the grave sites and they are not getting what they paid for.

    Legal action is being taken, the city has started to fine him $100 a day. News channels all have “troubleshooters” or “on your side” areas that bring issues like this to light. If you don’t like it, don’t read it.

  • portcity

    THIS IS A NEWS SITE NOT A COMPLAINT BOX….I have a hard time understanding people that only want to complain about something instead of solving problems. This is a complaint or legal issue it is not NEWS. Take legal ACTION or do something about the problem yourself. Even if you have paid for services your loved ones are still buried here and I for one would not let my relatives gravesite be tarnished because of one man. Get up and do something about it instead of crying about it. Then take legal actions. You can only beat the bush for so long. IF I WANT SOMETHING DONE RIGHT I DO IT MYSELF!!

  • Tonya Pridgen

    Use People who are in need to do community services hours. That is what the people do over on Princess place drive. Makes sense wouldn’t it?

  • Guest2020

    You know, this is real news to the people who have loved ones buried in that cemetery. They paid to have those graves taken care of and the person responsible for the care has basically stolen money from people in their time of grief. You shouldn’t be so doggone cold-hearted about it. How would you feel if it was your money and your loved one?

  • guest 1234

    OMG! When will you give us a break!!! You keep pushing real news right on down the line for this garbage??? Seriously?

    Do something original, let some mutt family complain on the cops, show a cute kitten, ANYTHING! This has jumped the shark. Its over. You’ve “covered” it so much its NON-news, I could care less about it at all now.

  • Amused

    When a newsroom runs the same piece every day with no apparent change in the story, they’ve got to find some way of keeping it current. Apparently WWAY has decided the best way to do that is to use a different photograph with the story headline.

    Too bad there doesn’t seem to be any mention as to who the photo actually is of. It kind of looks like an old photograph of Ho Chi Minh during his early years in Paris.

  • James Lewis

    For those in this community this cemetery hasn’t always been like this. Under the old ownership this cemetery was kept in order. Since
    Krupicka has taken over this cemetery the final resting place of many has become a headache to those who families still visit there love ones. Calvary use to have the staff that knew how to prepare graves and keep it neat, clean and tidy. The question is what happen? Mr. Krupicka has now become the grave digger and in my personal opinion is not doing a great job at that. Having once worked in the funeral home profession I find this to be a shame and disgrace on the status of this cemetery. If he can’t handle the responsibility then he needs to hire a staff to run and manage this cemetery.

  • McNeil

    I intend to make sure this is front and center until the matter is resolved! I don’t see why other people have to clean it up when the owner has been paid to clean it up! Now if he wants to give a lawn service the money he’s already been given to maintain the grounds then so be it but until then I am going to pursue this matter until it is setled.

  • SayWha?

    Read the post titled “Calvary Cemetery” from Lonnie Weaver.

  • Lynda H

    When I purchased the lot..I was told by the owner, that he will keep the graves cleaned…Well, he lied because that does not happen. I keep my son’s grave cleaned. I have even had people to steal the lights off his grave once I placed them. I do that every year on special occasions. I surely don’t wait for the owner to clean it because it will never get done. He needs to be held accountabilty for his actions. He promised a clean-up, he needs to do a clean-up. CLEAN IT UP, CLEAN IT UP.

  • Citizen11

    With the mass amount of landscaping companies in this county, it seems as if someone would donate a little of their time. There are times in life when circumstances dictate our daily lives. I don’t know the owner of the cemetery so I can’t pass judgement on him nor the families involved. We have the resources within our community to clean this place up. Maybe if some family members would volunteer a little time along with a few landscaping companies to rectify the situation. I am posting this in hopes that a landscaping company out there will read this and volunteer to help. Your rewards in life are great when you take the time to pay it forward.

  • otherguest

    Leave it alone, for goodness sake!

    There are better things!

    Goody goody Gumdrops!

  • Apu

    How long is going to the one of the top stories on the website? Day 19 – nothing happened! Unless something has changed, it really isn’t the top issue of the day, every day. How about just giving us periodic , rather than daily, updates unless there are new developments in this story. It’s just rehashing the same story over and over again with the only change to the article being a chnage in the headline adding one more day.

  • Grandmuma

    This place has an F rating with the Better Business Bureau. AND there is only ONE complaint filed on them. Get busy people, make complaints and get it on record with the BBB.

  • guesty

    Apparently reading fundamentals isn’t your friend. Ask your helper to explain it to you. And I didn’t make himm look stupid, he accomplished that all on his own. Just like you did.

  • SayWha?

    Dumb: A week after purchase the remote dies I “would be very happy”? Of course I wouldn’t.

    Dumb: A week after purchase I would just buy a new remote instead of having the vendor fix the problem? Only if I had a phobic avoidance of conflict.

    Dumb: Equating an untended relative’s grave to a dysfunctional remote. Not only dumb but incredibly insensitive.

    Dumb: Equating an untended relative’s grave to a dysfunctional remote. Not only dumb but incredibly insensitive. (So dumb, I posted it twice.)

  • guesty

    The families paid for this service when they bought the plots and they are not receiving what they paid for. I had to use the TV scenario for simpleminded people like yourself to understand.

  • Guestman.

    That is not what you said at all. You said two different things in the posts and then you try to make himm look stupid, you moron.

  • Guest2020

    I think the title of his last post speaks for itself.

  • DD2010

    Jack was nothing but nice to my family and each time I have visited the site, it has been clean. Jack has always returned my calls and kept his word. I pray this is a misunderstanding and that God bless all involved. I do want my family members to rest in peace.

  • wilm city here

    if they so concern about their family members graves why dont they get together and go clean it up there seft. no they stand around bitch about it.

  • guesty

    Yea, they shouldn’t complain about not getting what they paid for when they purchased the plots. I bet if you were to buy a TV, got it home and a week later the remote died, you wouldn’t bitch about it. You would be very happy. You could just get up and manually change the channel. Or you could go buy a remote.

  • Timekeeper

    My exact feelings put just a little more bluntly.

  • Guest2020

    If they pay to have it cleaned, then the person being paid, should go and do his job.

  • justin

    This story dates back to to early 2009 – since the death of the past owner, Stanley Rehder, his son-in-law Jack has all but abandoned the site. If these families were promised services after their relative’s burials, then take the contracts and file a lawsuit. Until then, pick up a rake and shovel and get busy,

  • guestsh

    Did he promise to do it in 13 days?

  • Guest2020

    I have seen this story at least two other times. It’s an ongoing issue where the owner continues to make promises and repeatedly refuses to honor those promises.

  • Lonnie weaver

    If knew where Calvary Cemetery was located I would offer my lawn care service and clean the cemetery up but not for free and keep the cemetery in good shape I can be contacted at 910-297-0495

  • Joe

    And I will help you.

  • willingtohelp1

    Really people- if this were let’s say Greenlawn- is this the same advice you would be giving these families? I don’t think so….

    You would expect Greenlawn to do something about it… but since it is hidden in a neighborhood that most of you will NEVER visit- you are not concerned about the real issue at hand- this owner is neglecting his responsibilities to these families.

    I have two loved ones buried at this site and I am afraid what I am going to find when I visit. If someone decides to do a clean up day- I know several people in my family will be there… maybe the owner needs a fresh start… he did inherit this property from his father in law??? or maybe he just does not care…who knows.

    If the clean up takes place and he gets back to this- you will know.

  • justcurous

    I am just curious if you paid for the cleaning service? If you didn’t then why do you expect something for free. instead of whining get out there and clean the graves of your family members.

  • Save Calvary Cemetery

    They City of Wilmington Code Enforcement has given him until the 18th to clean up the mess out there in the cemetery. Several complaints from families have been filed with the North Carolina Cemetery Commission…I’m talking hundreds. There is not a misunderstanding. Understand that when the families paid for the burial plots, we paid for the perpetual care as well. Many families have considered having their loved ones exhumed but it is too costly. This is the only African American Cemetery that our community has. The oldest is Pine Forest that is filled. So Calvary is our only option. It is a disgrace and we are sick and tired of his broken promises. This didn’t just start overnight. This has been going on since 2009. The African American community is going to make Calvary a place of dignity and honor the way it should be. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but unless you have experienced this you wouldn’t understand. Many graves stones have been vandalized and nearly destroyed. Ant colonies are embedded in nearly every burial site. Flowers from previous funeral services are left by the grave sites for several weeks and have become an eyesore. The grass is so overgrown that many of the graves are unnoticeable. There is debris all over the grounds. We do go out there and cut around our loved ones grave sites…but why should we have to do that when that’s what he was paid to do? Every family with a loved one buried out there is grieving all over again. I am out there at least 1-2 times a week so I am stating the facts from what I have seen. I have even had families from out of state call me wanting the address for the cemetery commission. Mr. Krupicka has had ample time now we will move forward in our efforts to save our beloved Calvary Memorial Cemetery.

  • GrandmaK

    This information below is from Oakdale Cemetery, I assume this Calvary place has the same practice? Can anyone who bought a plot there confirm this? If this is the case then this place needs to be sued for keeping the money that suppose to be spent on upkeep.

    “Perpetual Care
    Perpetual care is money paid to help provide maintenance to graves and cemeteries, such as lawn mowing and raking at reasonable intervals. Perpetual care funds are kept in a separate account, and a portion of the money paid by the individual purchasing a lot is deposited into that account. Only the interest, and not the principal, of the perpetual care account may be expended for maintenance of the property.”

    Also Oakdale has plots starting at $1500.00. That seems reasonable to me.

  • Timekeeper

    I assume Stanley Rehder had the original contract to provide services to the grave yard. Since his death, was there anything in the contract to make the new owner responsible for the same services?


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