War Memorial to Slain Iraqi Soldier Vandalized

A war memorial dedicated to a local soldier who died while serving in Iraq was vandalized this past week.

Sgt. Brandon Lee Wallace was killed by a roadside bomb near Fallujah in April, 2007.
His father wrote a song in memory of his hero son after his death.

The St. Louis Post Dispatch reported that the memorial dedicated to Sgt. Wallace was vandalized this week:

CRYSTAL CITY — Robin Wallace cried the first time she saw the vandalism of a bronze sculpture dedicated to her son, Sgt. Brandon Wallace. The soldier’s father, Rick Wallace, couldn’t sleep after he heard about it.

“The saddest part was driving by and seeing only the boots left,” Robin Wallace said.

The statue of a pair of boots, rifle and helmet at the entrance to Crystal City High School probably was vandalized early March 18, school officials said. The vandals also tore letters off of the gymnasium signage and ransacked a coach’s office, Superintendent Ron Swafford said.

“I’m a veteran myself, and I cannot see why anybody would do that,” Swafford said. “Our kids have been really touched by it. Every time I go out in the hall, they ask me if we have any information about who did this.”

Sgt. Wallace was killed last April by a roadside bomb in Iraq. The sculpture was dedicated in September.

The vandals broke the rifle and helmet off of the base of the memorial and stuffed them in nearby bushes. The broken pieces now sit in Swafford’s office.

A local welder has volunteered to fix the monument. A reward for information leading to an arrest started at $200. It’s now at $1,650, Swafford said.

Rick Wallace said he would like to give the vandals two options: jail time or a tour of duty in Iraq.


Crystal City Schools Superintendent Ron Swafford shows what vandals broke off of the memorial statue of Sgt. Brandon Wallace at Crystal City High School. (J.B. Forbes/P-D)

Hat Tip to Allman and Crane for this story.

Today is National Medal of Honor Day.

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