NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – Sometimes new adventures come into our lives from the most unexpected places. One man didn’t know that adventure was just feet from his front door. 

In his life, Ken Sawyer has traveled all 50 states as a truck driver, he’s delivered a child as a volunteer firefighter, he’s even been on a reality TV dating show. When he moved to Murfreesboro last year, Ken thought nothing could surprise him anymore. Yet, when he looked to add a carport to his Atlas St. home, he got a call from the city.

“They said, ‘make sure you keep it five feet from the cemetery,'” Ken said. “I was like, ‘from the what?!’ I just embraced it as something kinda cool.”

The area was so grown over, Ken had no idea headstones were just feet away from his home. 

“My friends say, ‘you can get out of that deal if they didn’t tell you.’ I’m like, ‘why?” Ken said. “I won’t have to worry about loud parties from that neighbor. They won’t borrow things. They’re the perfect neighbors.”

After working to clear the area, Ken’s working with historians and the New England Historic Cemetery Restoration Project. He’s getting answers to the big questions.

How old is the cemetery?

“It goes back to at least 1850,” Ken answered.

How many people are buried there?

“We’re assuming between five and eight,” he said.

Ken’s raising money to restore a cemetery he said once belonged to the Carothers family.

“To me, these were forgotten people,” Ken said. “I thought this was my chance to make these people no longer forgotten. As long as I’m living here, this cemetery will be taken care of.”

A GoFundMe for the cemetery restoration can be found here

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