Families’ Grief Compounded When They Can’t Visit Loved One’s Grave at Woodlawn Cemetery: Company Responds

Complaints about the Woodlawn Cemetery in Joliet have ranged from potholes along the road to downed trees blocking access. Both Woodlawn Memorial Cemeteries I and II are affected. Woodlawn II is located at Essington and Jefferson. Complaints have been made to Everstory Partners with no improvements being made. WJOL listener tell us that, due to the blocked entrance by a downed tree they cannot visit their loved one as the road is not passable. WJOL received a response from Everstory Partners.

Brooke Austin is the Area Vice President with Everstory Partners and wrote this:

We own and operate Woodlawn Memorial Park II in Joliet, IL. I’m in receipt of your most recent concern regarding Woodlawn’s temporary closure caused by a collapsed bridge at the entrance of our property.  This occurred in early September and within a few days we had a storm that caused trees to fall as well. As a result of these unfortunate events, we had to close our only entrance into the cemetery while we worked on a plan for temporary stabilization of the bridge (a permanent fix cannot start until after winter).  Please know that we are working diligently to get our cemetery reopened to the public. While we do not have a definitive timeline for reopening the location, we have worked closely with our insurance provider and assigned a project manager who is currently vetting contractors to move us forward. Once we have a signed contract in place, we will be able to provide more context around the scope of work needed to make entry into the property safe for all visitors as well as a completion timeline for our temporary correction.

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and frustration this has caused, but please trust that we are doing everything we can to get this corrected as quickly as possible. We will continue to keep our families updated on our Facebook page as well as through our local staff at Woodlawn. 

WJOL reached out to the City of Joliet and Interim City Manager Rod Tonelli who says since both cemeteries are NOT located within the corporate limits of the City of Joliet, they have no jurisdiction over the property.

Everstory Partners are headquartered in Pennsylvania and own and operate over 300 cemeteries, 70 funeral homes and eleven crematories.