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Vandalism at Veterans Memorial Plaza
Veterans Memorial Plaza in Milton has been damaged by vandals several times this year. And now, Santa Rosa County has bought a surveillance system to protect the place.
Channel Three's Joe Douglass spoke with the memorial's manager about the situation.
How low can you go?
This is the Wall of Tears.
Water used to drip out of these spigots, but not anymore because somebody came and broke them.
And that's just one of several acts of vandalism that have happened here.
Ralph Nesenson, Manager, Veterans Memorial Plaza: "They don't have the respect, you know for veterans."
Ralph Nesenson helped protect our country for more than 25 years in the Navy.
He now serves as caretaker of Veterans Memorial Plaza.
The collection of monuments and tributes to fallen service members has stood here since 2004.
Ralph Nesenson, Manager, Veterans Memorial Plaza: "For ten years, we had no problems at all. All of a sudden, bingo, here in the last year it's just one after the other."
Nesenson lost his leg in a car accident years after retiring from the Navy.
Last July, he had to buy a golf cart after he says someone stole a similar vehicle from outside his office nearby.
Then in January, he found graffiti on one of the walls of the plaza, which has since been cleaned up.
Ralph Nesenson, Manager, Veterans Memorial Plaza: "They put their name on it and just different sayings."
A couple months ago, he says underwater lights were stolen from this fountain along with some light fixtures inside the memorial itself.
And there was more graffiti on a pathway, which also had to be removed.
Ralph Nesenson, Manager, Veterans Memorial Plaza: "It irritates me...Irritates me."
Nesenson says the county's had to pay between 2,000 and 25-hundred dollars for repairing everything, including the Wall of Tears, which will be fixed soon.
The county also recently paid more than 11-hundred dollars for a camera that will sit on top of this poll as part of a surveillance system.
Milton Police are still looking for the vandals who caused all the damage.
The surveillance system should be installed by the end of the week.
In Santa Rosa County, Joe Douglass, Channel Three News.