White Rabbits : True Crime in the Pet Cemetery

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John Thompson, an influential man, was able to get Grace declared “insane”. Soon after entering the asylum she escaped to New Orleans.

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Being a suspicious death, police turned to Grace. She claimed she never made it there and he was killed for his $500,000 gambling treasure.

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Grace was a gifted writer. While operating her flower shop on Freret Street she penned “A Garden Book of Old New Orleans” filled with poems, musings, and tips for growing a thriving garden in Louisiana.

During this time, she played organ for Our Lady of Lourdes Church and wrote several hymns for their popular songbook used at churches around the country. Kansas City authorities tracked her down by finding the hymnal.

She escaped again while awaiting trial and moved out to Toca, LA, to open the E.E. Matt Pet Cemetery with her daughter Dorothy. When located again, the Louisiana Governor refused to send her back.

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Brandon Nodier dreamt he would work in a cemetery. He stands behind Dorothy in 1981.

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Grace is buried in an unmarked grave at Saint Bernard Memorial Gardens, a cemetery with no foliage or animals. The E.E. Matt Pet Cemetery and Plantation are in ruins, visited occasionally by rogue treasure hunters and teenagers who sit in the overgrown foliage by the few remaining headstones to drink.