Niagara Falls, N.Y. - A Niagara Falls woman contacted our tipline Friday, for help with a dispute she's having with a local cemetery.
Karen Centofanti lost her mother, father and 17-year-old son in a tragic car accident back in 1994. To help cope with their loss, Karen and her daughter, Anne Marie, visit St. Joseph's cemetery every week to spend time with their family.
But last week, Karen discovered something at her son's grave that made her and her daughter very upset; a solar cross that was once attached to the grave had broken off. And they say that's not all.
"We found a piece of granite knocked off the back of the stone," said Anne Marie Lodick. "Also, the solar panel is very loose and coming off and the way that is was broken it was tilted forward."
Anne Marie and her mother believe the cross was broken by a lawnmower or other piece of equipment used by the cemetery's maintenance workers.
Once Karen emailed us with her concern, we contacted the cemetery. They told us they checked out the damage for themselves, and don't believe that is the case.
"I looked at the situation and the care takers were with me," said Joseph Pastwik, Parish Administrator od St. Joseph Church. "When we evaluated the situation we found that it wasn't our fault."
Church officials said they will not help cover the cost of replacing the cross. However, they did say Karen's homeowner's insurance may cover part of the damage.
Meanwhile, Karen says she will continue her fight and hopes to have a new cross in time for her son's birthday on September 28th.
"It is heartbreaking because my son was only 17 years old and had his whole life ahead of him. So for him to be at his final resting place and have this done... it's is very upsetting to me."