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FL Hospital DeLand Invites Community To Honor Unmarked Graves

By on August 9, 2017 in WNDB News

DeLand, FL – Florida Hospital in DeLand is holding a memorial service to honor several unmarked graves that were found during an expansion project.

When the remains were found in July 2014, construction on the hospital’s cardiac catheterization expansion was put on hold. After an investigation, the medical examiner’s office said the remains were not forensic.

21 graves from the late 1800s to the early 1900s were uncovered by archaeologists with the international archeological and environmental firm, Prentice Thomas & Associates. They found that the area was used as a county poor house that was turned into an agricultural poor farm in the 1890’s. Many of the residents were elderly or in bad health, which leads the archaeologists to believe that they were buried there as well.

“This undocumented gravesite was unbeknownst to us, or Volusia County for that matter,” said Florida Hospital DeLand chief operating officer, Hector de Jesus. “The hospital was built in 1962, and subsequent to that, this land was basically orange groves, so this was quite a surprise to us.”

The remains were given to a laboratory in Fort Walton Beach, FL for analysis since the graves were not marked or on record with Volusia County. The remains have since been laid to rest at Oakdale Cemetary in DeLand.

The memorial service will be held on the two-year anniversary of the $3.5 million lab expansion. The 6,740 square-feet of additional space houses a third cardiac catheterization lab, a second endovascular/special procedures lab and room for another lab to be added in the future. Cardiac catheterization is a procedure used to diagnose cardiovascular illnesses.

On August 15 from 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM, the community is invited to help honor the remains and celebrate the lab expansion at Florida Hospital DeLand’s Memory Garden located at 701 W. Plymouth Ave. in DeLand. Refreshments will be provided.

If you wish to attend, you are asked to RSVP here.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.

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