A statue of a Confederate soldier at Georgia cemetery was severely vandalized. (Doug Walker, Rome News-Tribune)
A statue of a Confederate soldier that stood high atop a Georgia cemetery was severely vandalized—with the statue’s hands and rifle cut off and its face bashed in.
Someone or a group of people entered Myrtle Hill Cemetery on Wednesday before damaging the monument, which was built in 1887.
The statue that was defaced is of a Confederate soldier with his arms hanging down in front of him holding a long rifle upright in his hand. The hands and rifle were cut off and the face bashed in.
“It looked like it was surgically cut,” Rome City Manager Sammy Rich told the Rome News-Tribune. “It’s just super disappointing that somebody would go to that much trouble to get up there, put a ladder up or whatever to reach it.”
Cemetery Director Stan Rogers estimated the value of the damages at $200,000, the newspaper reported.
The statue’s hands and rifle were cut off. (DOUG WALKER, ROME NEWS-TRIBUNE)
Cemetery department personnel removed the monument Thursday. Rich said the city would try to determine how to go about fixing it and putting it back.
The gates to the cemetery are locked to vehicular traffic each evening but anyone could have made the hike up the hill on foot.
The act of vandalism occurred sometime late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. The rifle and hands were gone when the vandalism was discovered Thursday. Rich said he doesn’t know how to read the incident because of the way they broke up the face.
Crews investigated the damage to the statue. (DOUG WALKER, ROME NEWS-TRIBUNE)
The statue was erected by “the Women of Rome” in 1887 as a memorial to the defenders of the Confederate states. The women’s group maintained the Civil War section of the cemetery. The monument initially had an urn atop the base. It was replaced by the standing soldier in 1909.
The vandalism comes amid a nationwide debate about whether Confederate monuments should be taken down. Across the U.S., at least 25 cities and towns have removed or relocated Confederate monuments.
This needs to end now.
President Trump needs to take action ASAP or America’s history will be just a distant memory.
TOGETHER WE WILL MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!