While picking up trash along Stevens Mill Road in Auburn on Earth Day, we were shocked to discover an enormous amount of trash concentrated around Evergreen Cemetery. Investigating further, we discovered trash around the entire border of the cemetery. Plastic flowers and other plastic memorial debris appear to have been routinely discarded in the adjacent woods.

There were also lots of beer bottles, cups and other waste that have clearly accumulated over many years. Essentially, the cemetery is ringed by a dump. We filled the back of our truck, but a huge amount remains.

We have two suggestions: first, our community should show its respect for the deceased and for the planet by cleaning up the remaining mess now. Second, we should avoid a repeat of this situation by limiting future memorials to strictly biodegradable products.

Alternately, we could require those who place memorials to dispose of them properly after an appropriate time.

Jane & Jay Baxter, Auburn

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