Local woman starts non-profit to give abandoned babies a proper funeral

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - When a baby was abandoned and left in a dumpster, one question nagged at Linda Znachko’s heart as she watched the news coverage.

What happens to that baby's body after the camera's stop rolling?  Linda made one phone call to the Marion County Coroner's Office looking for an answer.

She remembers the response well. She was shocked, "They said the baby will be put in a mass grave. I said 'are you kidding me? We still have those?'"

That was eight years ago and the beginning of Linda's non-profit, He Knows Your Name.

Linda does whatever it takes to honor a child who has died and gives that child the gift of dignity in death.

"I can be purchasing a headstone for a family in need, or helping a family through infant loss to name their baby, or paying for a proper funeral.  In the case of a child who was abandoned and never named, that process starts with naming the child."  Linda said. "That's really important to me. By naming the child and moving past the tragedy into a redemptive healing time, it's a miraculous gift because it takes away the ugliness of the tragedy and gives everyone a new visual."

Linda invited FOX59's Fanchon Stinger to walk with her through the process of honoring a child who was never claimed.

After Linda legally claims a child, she begins the process of replacing the image of tragedy with a beautiful celebration of life.

That celebration includes many from the community to help make it happen and who support He Knows Your Name.

Little Angel Gowns, Indiana Funeral Care and the Washington Park Cemetery are big supports of Linda's cause.

She also works with the Marion County Coroner's Office and several hospitals around the state.

Linda serves children and families in Indiana and several other states. The story of He Knows Your Name is now also changing how people care for abandoned children in Russia and Ukraine. ​