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Vandals strike Standing Rock Cemetery forsecond time in three weeks

By Diane Smith Record-Courier staff writer Published: November 11, 1997 12:00 AM

"It could be one of your loved ones' stones next," said Scott Stiegemeier, chairman of the cemetery board.

The most recent vandalism occurred last weekend, when about 25 stones were overturned, and about six were broken.

The incident comes on the heels of a similar vandalism Oct. 21, when more than 30 headstones were knocked over.

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In both cases, the stones damaged were located in the northwest corner of the cemetery, which contains some of the oldest graves in the cemetery. A few of the stones knocked over in this weekend's incident were the same ones knocked over previously.

"It's terrible," Stiegemmeier said. "If anyone knows anything, they should call the police."

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A reward of $2,600 is waiting for anyone who has information leading to the arrest and conviction of the vandals. The reward is a combined effort of the Portage Marble and Granite, its owner, Tom Buzzi and its main supplier, Rock of Ages Corp. of Graniteville, Vt., the cemetery board and Mayor Jerry Fiala, a member of the board.

But despite the award, the vandals remain at large, said Detective Mike Roberts, who is investigating the first vandalism.

Captain James Goodlet said the police department will provide increased patrol to the area in light of the incident whenever possible.

"We're going to do our best to prevent it in the future," he said. "We

are concerned and we're going to do whatever we can."

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