31 Nights of Halloween (2021 Edition/Night #1): A Jonestown Victim’s Grave is Identified

Every October, Ms. Antley posts nightly stories about local graves in North Louisiana. I look forward to her posts every October! They are well researched and interestingly written. This post is about a local victim of the Jonestown Massacre. I was the librarian she mentions in this post. It was very moving for me and an honor to have a hand in finding Miss Willis’ grave again.

For The Love of History

November 18, 1978 is one horrifying date in world history. It will forever be marred by the remembrance of Jim Jones and the demise of the residents of his “Jonestown” settlement in Guyana. His followers had joined him in hopes for a better future, instead they had no future. In that day, he convinced over 900 people to willingly drink poison (or in some cases—force feed it to their children). Days later, the U.S. and Guyanese government took over the brutal task of identifying the dead and returning them home.

Initially, the United States had felt it was best to dig a mass grave and bury them there but Guyana officials refused to entertain that idea. This tragedy may have taken place in their soil but they did not want the burials or bad energy left behind.

Jones had followers from all over the United States. In fact, he had…

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