|Published:||Jan 01, 2014 4:25 PM EST|
|Updated:||Jan 01, 2014 6:00 PM EST|
ENGLEWOOD, Fla. - Disrespecting and stealing from veterans! People at a church in Englewood are upset because someone swiped seven flags from a memorial garden on Christmas Day.
Right now, investigators are looking for suspects.
It's a symbol of freedom and sacrifice.
"The American Flag we had just put up it was brand new because we don't let it get tattered," says Jim ratliff, Minister at Englewood East Church of Christ.
But investigators say someone stole that flag along with six others from the Englewood East Church of Christ, making Minister and Marine Corp Veteran, Jim Ratliff, question if people still have that same sense of respect.
"There's a lot of young kids that's laying all over this world that's died and that's what this garden is all about is it's in memory of our service men and women," he adds.
Ratliff says this happened on Christmas. The church always holds a special dinner for those who don't have family around.
"Somebody came in about 1:00 and said, 'Jim, why did you take our flags down?' I said, 'I did not take the flags down,' ... they said, 'Well where are they?' So we go out there and then we discovered every flag we had..."
The flags were gone leaving seven empty flag poles. Ratliff says the church has security cameras, including one near the garden.
"Through the surveillance I could see the flag coming down," he adds.
But not a clear enough picture of who did it. While this church waits to raise flags here again, they hope the person responsible learns a lesson.
"It just saddens me that we live in a time where people would do that," he says.
Ratliff says since this happened, many people have offered to replace the flags. For now, the church is thinking about improving its security system to make sure this doesn't happen again.
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