Alexander Blauhut (47) needed a whole week after the flood disaster of July 14th until he found the strength to come back for the first time – to the cemetery in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler (Rhineland-Palatinate). To the grave of his son Luke († 1). Here, where the flood raged particularly badly, knocking over tombstones, tearing out wooden crosses, washing up dirt, rubbish and even minibuses.
The father of the family had a bad premonition that actually came true: Lukas’ grave is gone! The plush bear, the cross, the white angel figure – everything above the earth has been washed away. A bare piece of earth was left behind.
“That knocks you out!” Says the family man as he now walks through the destroyed burial ground with BILD am SONNTAG reporters. “This place is sacred. It was like losing my son for the second time. I know this is bullshit. But it hurts, even if the flood hit others much harder. “
His wife Yvonne (38) is now looking for her son’s grave cross on Facebook – so far in vain. The cross read: Lukas Blauhut, born: February 2, 2013, died: April 13, 2014.
The boy suffered from a ruptured diaphragm, could not breathe alone – he was only 14 months old. His father: “I think of him so often. A moment of happiness was when he was able to eat plum jam himself for the first time with a spoon. “
The final resting place of the boy and many other people looks like it has been plundered. The old chapel has partially collapsed.
Many graves are simply gone. Local residents tell of how coffins swam through the streets on the night of the flood. A woman found dozens of grave crosses in her garden – but Luke’s was not among them.
When his father is standing between the graves and talking, the Bundeswehr suddenly approaches with wheel loaders. Soldiers remove wrecked cars and fallen trees. In this way the cemetery regains part of its dignity. Alexander Blauhut comes to the grave once or twice a month. His wife with Lukas’ siblings Emma (7) and Phil (10) even more often.
“We want to make the grave beautiful again soon,” says the family man. “First with a provisional cross, then with a stone.”