Alabama man Jim Davis lost a bid to keep his wife buried in his front yard Friday, after the state’s Supreme Court ruled that the remains be removed.
The court ruled 5-3 that Patsy Davis’ remains be moved, despite the fact that family cemeteries in rural Alabama are not uncommon.
The court cited a number of concerns with the grave, including its appearance in the center of downtown, the effect on property value and complaints from neighbors.
"We're pleased with the ruling of the Supreme Court and believe it to be correct," Attorney Ron Smith, the county’s representative, said.
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The 74-year-old vowed he would never remove his wife’s body from the front yard, noting that he had only honored his wife’s final wishes.
Despite the fact that Stevenson City Council initially rejected Davis’ request to bury his wife at their home, the former Marine dug a grave and erected a monument anyway.
“This grave site is my piece of America," Davis said. "I don't feel any different fighting for it than I felt about fighting for my country and I was willing to die for that."
Attorney for the city of Stevenson Parker Edmiston said the grave could be moved as early as next week.
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Davis could not be reached for comment after Friday’s ruling.