As Americans pause to remember those who served and paid the ultimate sacrifice veterans sites in four states have reportedly been vandalized and damaged.
Veterans sites in Alabama, Kentucky, and Virginia were vandalized, some extensively, according to ABC News. A veterans memorial in Anniston, Ala., was also struck by vandals twice in the past month, the latest occurring days before the nation marks Memorial day, according to WVTM 13 News.
The veterans memorial in Anniston’s latest incident included flags placed for this year’s Memorial Day celebration, which were ripped up and trashed.
“This is hallowed ground to me, it always has been,” Ken Rollins, with the state’s Board of Veteran’s Affairs, told WVTM. He was disgusted to find out the small American flags lining the park for Memorial Day were trashed. “The sticks were broken and placed in a pile. The flags were nowhere to be found,” said Rollins.
A Vietnam War memorial in the Venice area of Los Angeles was defaced extensively by graffiti during the past week. The memorial included the names of Americans missing in action or unaccounted for in Southeast Asia.
A Memorial Day cross display in Henderson, Ky., honoring the names of 5,000 veterans dating back to the Revolutionary War, was damaged when someone plowed through the crosses early Saturday.
The Petersburg National Battlefield in Virginia was looted, with several excavations found. The National Park Service said in a statement it is investigating the looting that took place at a Civil War battlefield. NPS indicated thieves were likely looking for relics on a field where more than 1,000 Union and Confederate soldiers died fighting during the Siege of Petersburg.
“This is an affront to the memory of people who fought and died on this field and it is destruction and theft of history from the American people,” said Petersburg National Battlefield Superintendent Lewis Rogers.
“This kind of aberrant behavior is always disgusting but it is particularly egregious as Memorial Day weekend arrives, a time when we honor the memories of our friends and family,” said Rogers.