Judge allows grieving family to decorate boy’s grave, with limit

CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) – The family of an 8-year-old boy may continue to decorate his grave at a Carlisle cemetery.

Cumberland County Judge Thomas Placey on Thursday issued an injunction sought by Vinny Capozzi’s family to stop Ashland Cemetery owner Steve Ewing from removing their decorations.

Under Placey’s ruling, the family can decorate the grave for up to 15 days. After that, anything removed must be returned to the Capozzis within 30 days.

Capozzi had a rare childhood disease that took him four years ago. His family has decorated his grave for nearly every major holiday since then.

His father, Lou Capozzi, said the decorations helped his family deal with their grief. He said he bought the plot without restrictions and, for four years, Ewing never objected.

Ewing recently posted rules and regulations on a wooden stake near the Capozzi plot. One rule says the owners reserve the right to remove anything “they consider injurious to the general appearance of the grounds.”

In April, he boxed up Vinny’s Easter decorations.

Ewing said the pinwheels, flags, Mardi Gras beads, and party hats were not appropriate for a historic cemetery, and he said some of the decorations could have damaged his mowers.

He said he didn’t object at first, but the decorations kept growing as the years went by.

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