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'This gives me hope:' Jacksonville mother receives help searching for daughter's grave after contacting 'Ask Anthony' team

Selesa Williams' daughter died in 1976 at the age of three. Williams moved away in 1986. She came back to find the cemetery in horrible condition.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — We have an update on a Jacksonville woman who is searching for her daughter's grave.  

Selesa Williams daughter died in 1976 at the age of three. She was buried in Sunset Memorial Cemetery at the corner of Moncrief and Edgewood on Jacksonville's Northside. Williams moved away in 1986 and came back a few years ago to find the cemetery in horrible condition. 

She contacted the "Ask Anthony" team for help finding her daughter's grave. We reached out to the city of Jacksonville, and they put us in touch with two experts who were willing to help. 

"It's just a mess. It's as if nobody cares about this spot," Selesa Williams said as she looked at the cemetery. 

Sunset Memorial Cemetery was a burial location for Jacksonville's black residents during segregation. The cemetery changed ownership over the years and wasn't maintained. Some headstones are almost completely covered in dirt, basically sinking into the ground. 

"Ok. I know it's a black cemetery. I get it.  But, we deserve respect too," Williams added.

The city of Jacksonville now owns a portion of this cemetery.  Williams knows her daughter, Katrinia, is here, and she's not giving up until she finds her.

"I know without a shadow of a doubt that it will bring me some peace," Williams said. 

Two weeks after we interviewed Williams, comfort came in the form of two experts. Williams was contacted by a specialist in historic preservation and an archaeologist. With tools and a shovel in hand, they start digging.

"This right here gave me hope. I've been out here trying to brush back leaves and all that," Williams explained. 

Unfortunately, we didn't find Williams' daughter on this day. But, we are continuing to search and will update you as soon as that discovery is made.

Remember, if you have a problem you can't solve, you can email AskAnthony@firstcoastnews.com


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