VFW commander George Mader said it’s disrespectful thieves targeted Veterans Memorial Park in Desert Hot Springs once again.
A viewer called our newsroom Monday night saying the marble cap of the monument in the center of the park, reading “In honor of all veterans who have served our country,” was stolen.
“It’s a shame. It’s ridiculous,” Mader said.
We showed city councilman Russell Betts the damaged statue, just about four months after five medallions, representing each branch of the military, were stolen from the park.
“I can’t believe they’d be so low to do this. It’s sickening,” said Betts.
“It hurts. It hurts a lot because of all the boys who passed and died so they could have all this freedom. It’s almost pathetic that people don’t realize what we’ve all done,” said Mader.
Mader said something needs to be done. He recommended the city install security cameras.
“It’s up to the city manager to take the steps. I’m sure the city council will encourage him to take some steps here to beef up some security at this park,” said Betts.
In recent months, vandals also targeted the Veterans of Foreign Wars office in Desert Hot Springs.
“Our sign has been shot at and everything else with BB’s and pellets. It’s in repair right now,” said Mader.
The City of Desert Hot Springs plans to replace the stolen piece of the monument. The medallions, which have already been ordered, will be installed soon, according to Betts.