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Brownwood veterans memorial damaged a week before Memorial Day weekend

bwood central texas veterans damage 4.jpg

The Brownwood Police Department is investigating what caused four granite tablets at a veterans memorial to break apart over the weekend.

At the moment, the destruction is being estimated at upwards of $40,000, said Harold Stieber, president of the Central Texas Veterans' Memorial.

Stieber first arrived at the memorial about 8 a.m. Sunday to finish working on the Huey Helicopter display. But he said his mood quickly changed when he saw four of the tablets laying on the ground in pieces.

"It's a tragic loss for us because a lot of time, effort and work went into this," Stieber said.

The tablets were originally installed at the site in the fall of 2016. A ceremony was held on Veteran’s Day to commemorate their official unveiling.

Yet, Stieber suspects there are two theories of what happened over the weekend, which police are investigating.

Either Saturday night's strong winds pushed the tablets to the floor or -- what's highly suspected -- is vandals knocked them to the ground.

"The memory of these men that were on this plaque are not to be forgotten," Stieber said. "It's our mission to see to it they're not, and so we will rebuild and soon."

Despite the damages, Stieber said the Central Texas Veterans’ Memorial will move forward with its Memorial Day plans.

"There's a lot of suffering in the world and this is minor compared to what's going on in the world," he said.

Memorial Day services will begin at 9:30 a.m. at Eastlawn Memorial Park in Early and then move to the Central Texas Veterans' Memorial in Brownwood at 11 a.m.

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