Sometime during the early morning hours on Friday, December 15, a white older model Toyota truck with an attached trailer was captured on camera with the theft and vandalism at the Walk of Heroes Veterans War Memorial in Rockdale County, Georgia. The veteran’s war memorial is located on Black Shoals Rd., in Conyers, Rockdale County, where the Suspects stole two service member statues, a large bronze globe weighing over 800lbs., and some bronze military emblems plaques with engravings. The Sheriff’s office described the suspected vehicle as a Toyota Tacoma built between 1995-2006 that is towing a trailer with wood-lined floors along with railings and the suspects' truck also has an extended cab with a lift as well as all-terrain tires.

Due to the size and the weight of the stolen war memorial objects has prompted the Sheriff’s office to believe that several suspects were likely involved in this criminal activity. Rockdale County Sheriff Eric J. Levett stated that this act is a dishonorable and disheartening act. Levett further stated that someone is trying to tarnish and destroy the place as the war memorial is where we recognize our country’s heroes and that will not be tolerated. He also added that they will find you. As to why the suspects stole the statues and the bronze ball, it may be that they are looking to make money off the stolen statues as scrap metal.

Local businessman offers reward

Levett stated that there is also a cash reward of $5,000, donated by a local businessman, leading to the arrest of the suspects. Levett has asked that anyone who has seen or know who these suspects are, can call the Rockdale County Sheriff's office and speak to Corporal Best at 770-278-8160 or you can call into the anonymous tip line at 404-577-TIPS (8477).

UPDATE: The Rockdale Sheriff's office now believes the vehicle to be a Toyota Truck, constructed between the years 1989-1995 but has jump seats, and has a different colored paint/primer close to the back left tire-well.

Acts of vandalizing veteran war memorials ongoing problem

A search of the news across the country, to name a few, has found that veteran war memorials were vandalized in Los Angeles, in a town in Kentucky, in Cedar Springs, Michigan, a Civil War veterans cemetery in Virginia. On Wednesday, a Monroe civil war memorial monument in Maine was vandalized where some suspect, for whatever the reason, carved a capital “C” in the company column and then added a three-word phrase in the regimental column between the veteran's names and no one knows why.

In October, unknown suspects, for whatever the reason, sprayed the Iwo Jima War Memorial in Fall River’s Veterans Park with a fire extinguisher and although it was easy to clean off, it has left veterans wondering why anyone would do this.

While war memorials continue to be vandalized, the fight on removing civil war statues and monuments continues to be one of the top stories in 2017. Educating today's youth need to be addressed as well as when it comes to veterans and the veteran holidays, there are some people that get Memorial Day and Veterans Day confused even though the federal holidays are entirely different.