As a young adult, Kathleen Cheramie visited her grandmother's grave in a tree-lined cemetery where white crosses dotted a plot of lush green grass just off Louisiana Highway 1.

Now, the cemetery in Leeville is a skeleton of its former self. The few trees still standing have been killed by saltwater intruding from the Gulf of Mexico. Their leafless branches are suspended above marsh grass left brown and soggy from saltwater creeping up from beneath the graves.

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