Insensitive vandals descended on a memorial in North Park bringing down trees planted a year ago in honor of the city’s three fallen heroes. Fragments of the trees were left scattered at the foot of stumps that remained rooted in the ground.
Outraged neighbors and police have theorized that the vandalism might have been acts of naïve teenagers who deserve to be punished accordingly. The three trees were planted in memory of Private Michael Bouthot, Sergeant Robert Barrett, and Specialist Scott Andrews. Residents gather at the site on Memorial Day every year to honor the brave men who died in combat while defending their country.
Andrew's mother, Joann Mello expressed her disappointment in the vandalism saying that those responsible should feel bad about the awful thing they did. Henry Souza, another resident who walks routinely with his dog by the memorial, was equally disheartened by the incident while recalling how beautifully the trees were growing.
Nonetheless, the works of some mindless punks will never stop the neighbors from remembering their heroes. They have vowed to replant the trees including the fourth one for Sergeant Eric Emond who passed away most recently.
A string of Similar vandalism
The offensive act of vandalism comes barely two weeks after unknown individuals vandalized 59 gravesites at a Jewish Cemetery in Fall River. Police detectives are already pursuing leads on the perpetrators who will be charged with a hate crime. The offenders defaced the gravesites with anti-Semitic insults with one bearing President Trump's campaign slogan "This is MAGA country."
These are two among a series of vandalism cases reported in various memorial sites across many popular cities; depicting a deep-rooted rot in the society. In 2016, several Jewish cemeteries and Holocaust memorials were vandalized across Germany. The vandals destroyed six gravestones at a Jewish cemetery in Kropelin among several others across the country in what appeared to be a calculated hate crime.
A year later, the Athens Holocaust memorial inscribed by Nobel Prize winner and author Elie Wiesel was vandalized. Texts written in Greek and French were scrubbed leaving only texts in English. In 2018, it is believed that vandals destroyed the Texas Veteran Memorials in Brownwood. The memorial was created in honor of the WWII veterans and those of the 36 infantry Division - state of Texas National Guard. Also in London, authorities are investigating cases of vandalism on five different memorials including the Allies Statue of the Second World War.