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Michelle Obama's father not in Burr Oak

July 14, 2009 at 5:09 PM   |   Comments

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CHICAGO, July 14 (UPI) -- A spokeswoman for first lady Michelle Obama Tuesday reversed herself and said Michelle Obama's father is not buried in Burr Oak Cemetery near Chicago.

Earlier, the first lady's communications office had said Fraser Robinson III, Mrs. Obama's father, was buried at the cemetery in Alsip, Ill., in 1991 after his death from complications from multiple sclerosis, the Chicago Tribune reported.

"There has been some confusion that has been cleared up," Camille Johnston, Mrs. Obama's communications director, said in a written statement Tuesday, ABC News and MSNBC reported. "Fraser Robinson III was buried at Lincoln Cemetery, NOT Burr Oak. I do not know where her grandfather was buried, but I do not believe he is at Burr Oak either."

Lincoln Cemetery is also located in Alsip, about two miles from Burr Oak.

The historic black cemetery was declared a crime scene after the hundreds of graves were disturbed in an alleged macabre scheme by cemetery employees to empty grave sites and resell them for cash.

Burr Oak was closed to the public, and sheriff's officers began conducting a shoulder-to-shoulder search of four quadrants of the grounds looking for disturbed graves to determine if the right bodies are buried in the right plots, WFLD-TV, Chicago, said.

Robinson worked as a pump operator for the Chicago Water Department and was a Democratic Party precinct captain. Her mother, Marian Robinson, left her South Side home in January and moved into the White House when her son-in-law, U.S. President Barack Obama, was inaugurated.

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