A development company's plans to construct an Internal Revenue Service building on a pet cemetery in Ogden has at least one pet owner threatening to take legal action, but the firm says it's doing all it can to solve the problem.
"We're trying to fight this," said Blaine Gledhill, whose collie Timber died in 1985. "It's sacred ground to us."Nearly every week since the dog died, he and his wife, Helen, have visited the grave to care for the plot and place flowers by the wooden marker. During the Christmas season, they bring a wreath with the dog's picture and last summer Gledhill, 64, hauled five-gallon buckets of water to the gravesite.
Liberty West Development, which plans to break ground on a 47,000-square-foot building by month's end, says it has tried to resolve the problem for everyone who has pets buried at the cemetery.
"We'll do everything we have to do to make them feel comfortable," said General Manager Tony Versteeg. He said the Gledhills are the only ones who have voiced dissatisfaction over a proposed solution, which involves notifying all of the pet owners so the dogs and cats can be moved. Cement slabs and crosses identifying the graves also will be returned to the pet owners.
"They get attached to a pet," Versteeg said. "I feel sorry for these people."
But he said, "If they don't move them, we will."
Gledhill says that solution is unacceptable. He says he paid $150 for what he thought was a permanent grave for Timber, and he doesn't want the dog moved.
"Nuts to them," Gledhill said. He said his interest is primarily for Timber, but he also is concerned about the other 198 pets in the cemetery and he is using part of his Social Security money to hire an attorney.