Cross taken, Vets offended – Reward offered

Less than two weeks after being temporarily saved by a Supreme Court ruling, the cross standing at the Mojave Desert War Memorial has been stolen. Sometime late Sunday night, vandals destroyed, ripped down, and carried off the cross that had stood since 1934 as a memorial to fallen veterans of foreign wars. It had been under a court order to tear it down, but the Supreme Court recently saved it pending outcome of a decision from a lower court. Kelly Shackelford of Liberty Institute calls the vandalism “an incredible outrage.”

“I mean it’s akin to desecrating people’s graves. It’s just a disgraceful attack on the selfless sacrifice of our veterans — and we’re not going to rest until this memorial is reinstalled,” exclaims the attorney. “I can’t really say it much better than the VFW commander [National Commander Thomas J. Tradewell, Sr.] who said, ‘This was a legal fight that a vandal just made personal to 50-million veterans.” Tradewell concluded his written remarks with this comment: “To think anyone can rationalize the desecration of a war memorial is sickening — and for them to believe they won’t be apprehended is very naïve.” Shackelford was asked if there were any clues leading to any suspects so far? “No,” he replies, “but we’re offering a $25,000 reward for any tips that lead to the arrest and conviction of whoever the people are who did this.” A website at has been set up for those with information on the theft.

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