Mom fears late daughter won't receive headstone due to cemetery policy

The mother of a little girl who was killed in a tractor accident is having trouble getting approval for the child's headstone.

BRYAN, Texas - A local mom wants answers after she was told her daughter's headstone won't be accepted at Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery.

Sonia Correa says her daughter, Makayla Rodriguez, died last March in a tractor accident. She was nine years old.

Compounding the heartache, Correa says flowers for her daughter keep getting thrown away. But now there's a bigger problem.

Citing someone associated with the cemetery board, the monument company handling Makayla's headstone told Correa the board wouldn't approve it. 

"It's a sculpted stone of her and her horse," said Correa. "It doesn't have a religious picture, a cross, you know."

St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Bryan oversees the cemetery and referred our questions to the Catholic Diocese of Austin, an organization that also has authority. 

A representative with the diocese says Makayla's headstone hasn't officially been disapproved despite what Correa was told. 

That's  because all monuments must pass a review committee and a priest before being allowed in the cemetery. It's something Correa says she wasn't aware of. 

The representative also says strict rules apply to the monuments. Designs on the monuments must be religious in nature and contain no secular images. 

However, in our time at the cemetery, we found headstones that contained things like A&M logos or sports illustrations.

Correa says it's a double standard. 

"Why can't I have mine? I've waited 10 months," she said. 

She's also losing hope and is considering moving her daughter from the cemetery. 

"It might seem like I don't want to fight back but I'm just tired coming and it's always something,"  said Correa. 

The diocese says it is looking into the matter of other monuments having secular images and urges Correa to formally submit her daughter's headstone for review. 

 

(© 2017 KAGS)


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