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Reidsville Confederate soldier memorial supporters hide vandalism, await repairs

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REIDSVILLE, N.C. -- Before the sun set on the day in which the Confederate Soldier Memorial was vandalized supporters of the statue had it covered.

On Friday, city workers noticed the statue covered with words like slavery, KKK, Nazi, and Jim Crow.

The words were spray-painted in black then the statue was also splashed with red paint.

City workers did not notice the vandalism before they left for lunch but reported it as soon as they returned and saw the damage. Reidsville police said some of the city workers also noticed that the paint was still wet when they tried to start scrubbing it clean.

Just after dinner time, Rodney Williams and his son visited Greenview Cemetery to help hide messages left behind on the statue.

“To the people who did this: little do they know that because this monument sits in a cemetery, they have committed a felony,” said Williams who said the vandals violated and desecrated a grave site, which could come with a penalty of prison time.

Williams is a past commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans in Reidsville. He said the statue and the land where it stands in the Greenview Cemetery belong to the North Carolina division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. Even though some of the paint has been removed it will be up to that group to decide when and how to restore the monument.

Until then, the words that were sprayed on will lay hidden under a black tarp.

“So people don't see what's happened here,” said Williams.

Williams said the graveyard offers little protection for the statue from vandalism. He said many people opposed to moving to the graveyard from the center of town believed eventually the statue would be targeted by vandals.

“We've talked until we've been blue in the face it should have been put right back downtown where it once was,” said Williams.

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