TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The search began Tuesday at MacDill Air Force Base to learn more about a hidden cemetery potentially buried underneath the base’s grounds.
A ground-penetrating radar search of at least 126 graves buried at Zion Cemetery – in what is now Robles Park – has prompted searches on both sides of Tampa Bay. Those searches have spanned as far north as Brooksville.
Tampa Bay’s hidden graves
Click the map to see where lost graves have been discovered, and where others are suspected:
8 On Your Side has reported the seemingly countless discoveries of lost graves around Tampa Bay over the last few years.
Now one of those lost graves may uncover dozens of graves on the grounds of MacDill, where death certificates dating back from the early 1900s point to the final resting place of residents.
Two archaeologists, two cadaver dogs and two K-9 handlers explored woods on the base on Tuesday and marked any indications of a cemetery or burial site.
“We’re taking our time and we’re making sure we do everything right. We’re hiring experts and we’re really looking at the area so that we can do right by the families if there are folks buried here and do right by them, because that’s what they deserve,” Lt. Brandon Turner, a MacDill AFB spokesman said.
LATEST BY THE NUMBERS HEADLINES:
- Smart thermometer data shows fewer fevers in Tampa Bay, indicating a slower spread of coronavirus
- Coronavirus in Tampa Bay: Which cities have COVID-19 patients?
- Grading social distancing in Tampa Bay: Residents still mobile, terrible at staying home
- Florida won’t see peak coronavirus impacts until May, study predicts
- Firearm background checks in Florida nearly triple as coronavirus fears spread