Thieves target memorials

Anzac Green is missing its flag and lanyard.

The brass cross stolen from Pukeatua Church.

The silver vases stolen from Puketaua Church

Heartless thieves are demeaning the feelings of so many people who lost family members at wars by stealing several items from Anzac Green in Te Awamutu and Pukeatua Church.

Te Awamutu RSA life member Lou Brown said it broke his and several RSA members’ hearts to hear thieves had taken a brass cross and silver vases from the church.

The inscription on the base of the cross says: “To the glory of God and in memory of Horace James Jemmett, 9.6.1915, Gallipoli.”

Then, not for the first time, the flagpole in Anzac Green was hit again. This time thieves not only took the flag but also the lanyard that holds it up.

That means RSA and Menz Shed members have a lot of work to do to get the flagpole ready for Anzac Day.

The pole is kauri and already had some damage to it. The pole will have to be taken down, fixed, a new lanyard threaded through it and a new flag purchased.

“We need to have these sorts of issues addressed. This is demeaning for families plus there is a cost to the community,” said Brown.

Both thefts at the church and in Anzac Green happened last week.

Brown said Waipā District Council parks staff had put a lot of effort over the summer brightening up the town’s parks and reserves.

“The town is looking great so when I hear about thieves, vandals and taggers, it makes me angry.”

Lou Brown

The last attack on Te Awamutu’s flag pole involved vandals cutting the lanyard and leaving the flag on the ground ahead of Armistice Day commemorations in the town.

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