50 American Flags Stolen, Damaged In Uniontown

UNIONTOWN (KDKA) — Community members are upset after thieves damaged or stole more than 50 American flags in Uniontown, Fayette County.

The flags line several streets for the upcoming Fourth of July celebrations there.

Red stripes spaced with white, 50 stars on a field of blue – it’s a design monumental to Americans – at least to most Americans.

“What they’re doing is just cutting them off the poles and letting them lay on the ground,” said Mike Gaydos, of American Legion Post 57.

Over the past two weeks, officials say more than 50 flags and poles have been stolen or damaged.

Keith Hillings and the local Elks Club place the flags along Gallatin Avenue.

“I rescue them. As we see them getting bent and broken, we go down the street, throw them on our trucks and we rescue them,” he said.

“It’s a shame. Every time we put up the flags, we lose flags,” added Gaydos.

American Legion Post 57 began the flag project in Uniontown 15 years ago.

“Originally we had 850; we’re probably down to 450 right now,” he said.

Getting donations to pay for replacements in a tough economy isn’t easy. On Fayette Street alone, officials say 21 flags were recently vandalized.

“The city police have caught a couple of young teenagers this weekend – with the flags in possession,” said Gaydos “What they [ought to] do – put them in boot camp; put them in the Marines, send them over to fight for our country. Let them learn what this flag means.”

Despite picking up the teens, the investigation into the flag vandalism continues, and now a $200 reward is being offered.

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  • zip

    I have a better idea for these people. Send them to some third world country and let them work for the wages people there earn and live in the conditions people there live in. Tell them they can come home when they earn enough to replace the flags they destroyed. They should be back in about fifteen years with a whole new attitude!

    • Hottie

      Awesome idea!

      • Terobhau

        Anonymous Amiego… there are illegals from other nations too.. yo!

      • John Thomas

        That’s why Anonymous qualified it. Illegals from other countries would not disrespect our flag. Mexicans, who coincidentally booed our national anthem at the World Cup have no respect for our flag. They are wearing out their welcome and our compassion rather quickly.

    • Re Re

      Amen! This disrespect for our country is filtering down from the RESIDENT in the White House who has no respect for our country or our military. It’s all b.s. talk with him. These little brats deserve a swift kick in the ass and a good smack in the face. And let’s give their parents — if they have any — the same treatment. I, too, am sick to death of these losers disrespecting our country. Send them to the very edge and push them over. Let ’em swim to some third world banana country. I have no time for these creeps.

      • I'mDone.

        I guarantee you that at least 90 percent of the thugs who destroyed the flags are on some kind of government assistance too. They hate America, but have their hands out and have never contributed to society. It’s one thing to lose a job and be on unemployment (that is what it is for) but to sponge off neighbors who bust their butts to keep food on the table is completely different.
        Find them and ship them away. I’m tired of it.

    • Namey Name

      I was a summertime punk kid when I was young. Yes we did some vandal type stuff, but the flag was off limits. the thought never even entered our minds, and believe me thoughts entered our minds. it’s just a sad new day.

    • Aggie94

      AMEN to that! Better yet, don’t let them come back. I’m so sick of people who hate our country and our way of life.

      • cleatus

        Probably kids from parents that are Obama supporters!

      • Anonymous

        I bet the kids parents are illegals from Mexico

  • American in Japan

    Those teens that damaged the American flags should be made to stand in the center of town on the 4th of July with a sign saying ” A lot of Americans gave their lives so I could disrespect the American Flag and what it stands for”.

    • Bob W

      You are so right. That would be the most appropriate punishment because it would shame them publicly and probably force their parents to discipline them as well, since they wouldn’t want to be humiliated by their ignorant kids in the future.

      • Diamondback

        What am I gonna do about it?


        One empty .45ACP casing ejected from chamber of smoking Kimber Ultra Carry II.

      • Anonymous

        Shame is one concept; and then after the parade help in the clean up and perhaps talk to some veterans, especially those coming back from OEF/OIF mostly because they are still young enough to instill physical fear if needed. No offense to the vets of WWII/Korea/Vietnam, but these young punks will just roll their eyes and think, “Whatcha gonna do about it, grandpa?” But a steamed 20-30 something vet could stomp them into a mud hole.
        Shame and fear – and awesome combination.

      • Anonymous

        There is no shame any longer. Look to the political parties….none!

    • JJStryder

      The Parents need a bit of discipline as well. I’m tired of our society being victimized by these disrespectful monsters brought up by incompetent parents, permissive schools and an ineffective judicial system. Problem is, if we dare as citizens to take back our streets, we’re the ones in front of a judge.

      • MGWilson

        As most pest control companies are allowed to apply for and purchase both sound suppression devices and night vision equipment, just for the purpose of quietly eliminating vermin off of our streets and property at night, seems like a very good start up business. I would bet that everyone living on those streets would be glad to contribute to the eradication fund.

  • Hoss

    Punishment for these vermin should involve being forced to enlist in a branch of the Armed Services, possibly the USMC. There they will be taught to respect the flag, and serve our country too

    • Doc Jones

      The Marine’s are The Few and The Proud. They are called that for a reason. I suggest you send the vandals to a Third world country and wait for them to beg to come. But the Marine’s, no. I’d just send them home anyway.

    • Rod Anders

      We DON’T want them in the Marines! We are not a dumping ground for trash.

      • Adnama

        Oh please don’t put them in our armed forces!!! I personally respect the members of our armed forces and try to instill that respect into my children whenever I can… putting trash like this in would disrespect what our service men and women stand/fight for.

        Let them pay to replace what they damaged and then make them march in the parade holding signs telling people what they did…and let their parents march along side them with signs saying “these are my kids…I failed as a parent!”

        I for one would have never done anything like this for fear my Dad or Mom would tan my hide if I got caught… my children may not like me all the time, but I am their parent and they will have respect…. unlike theses vandals. Shame on them and shame on their parents.

      • pragmatic

        considering how unlikely it is they’d even survive boot camp, I don’t think that will be a problem.

        send them to africa and let them see how good they *had* it here.

      • Anonymous

        I don’t think it’s a case of dumping the trash…. I think the Marines is a GREAT place to begin learning respect

      • DD

        I agree you have a tough enough job, you don’t need to be the babysitters too. Thank you for being there for us.

      • Tom Walter

        Amen Brother

      • Frank Slaby

        I agree. Semper fi Marine!

        U.S.N. Ret.

      • RoBoTech

        Apparently you are, by the Obama Admin’s standards.
        DADT comes to mind.

  • Stare at the Truth

    Drop them off in Brushton wearing white sheets!

  • harry p.pickle

    omen of things to come

    • Ken

      Already happening Harry. Did you see the reports of black on white violance this past weekend alone on Drudge Report?? It’s usually NOT being reported by the MSM though. Big surprise right?

  • johnny

    a few claymores should fix this problem

  • GDog Slim

    union MAGGOTS

  • WilliamPenn

    What do you expect when you have a president who denigrates the USA at every opportunity and has been disrespecting our flag since he was a candidate? These thugs are just following Obama’s example.

    • Jen

      Agree 100% – our youth of today is in for a rude awakening

      • Massimo Deportado

        When they wake up, what will they see?

        Their job taken by an illegal with their parents knowledge AND conscent.

        It’s a shame, all of us are to blame….. = \

  • JoeThe Great

    You smell that Ringo??? Smells like pieces of s h i t.

  • Ken

    August…….There’s probably MILLIONS of people who would LOVE to live here from outside the U.S. If you don’t like it here, MOVE OUT. We’ve had enough of you Marxist, Socialist, or Communist haters. We’re FED UP with you bashing the greatest countery EVER on planet earth. Perhaps you need to educate yourself by reading our Constitution first. Just sayin……..

    • David Emerson Powell

      I agree – All the people who were born here and talk about this country being so bad and do stuff like this I would trade them for North Koreans, Chinese, Cuban or whatever people who want to come here and be good citizens.

    • Tom Walter

      Spot On, Ken

  • ManOnPoint

    I think they should be made to clean the local football stadium a few times after a huge home game. They definitely should be made to put some community service hours in for their stupid decision. Maybe then they would have a tiny idea of what that flag stands for and the blood that was shed to sustain it.

  • Kelroy

    To the poster’s commenting on the race of these miscreants….Race doesn’t matter. Teens are stupid no matter what race they are. My nephew (white)
    stole military plaques off of tombstones in our cemetery. His grandfather
    (a city council member) publicly humilitated him and practically disowned him.
    This is a shame on you thing, it takes their own families to shake their heads in shame. Teens are really really stupid.

    • BitterClinger

      I agree, you can have several kids in the same family, some can turn out great without ever doing very stupid things, while a sibling can totally shame the family doing unthinkable things. If you’re going to play the blame game, it’s never your fault then. Either the parents were too strict, if only they had not spanked me and made me go to church, if only they had spanked me and not made me go to church, too strict! too lenient! I’m really sick of the blame game. These punks knew earn well they were doing wrong. Time to humiliate them publicly.

    • Ken

      Kelroy…….I don’t know if teens are really really stupid. It’s probably more like that they don’t RESPECT anything or anyone nowadays. It’s the “dumbing down” of the youth by Progressives so that they don’t respect things. Kids today can’t tell you much about our history and as such, DON’T RESPECT what we fought for and are fighting for today. Hence, no respect for the flag. We’re in big trouble if we don’t stop this trend of Progressive education….

  • SemperFi46


    • Ken

      Well said Marine. As a vet, i’ll fight along side anyone willing to defend our country from these lawless idiots. Prep and Pray my friend, that day I fear is fast approaching………..I HOPE I’M WRONG.

      • Anonymous

        I agree, the liberals have gotten what they wanted they are taking America apart one piece at a time.

        I am also a vet and will fight to the end, This is not what our founding fathers wanted.

        Lock and load

        US ARMY MP

      • Brian McMurdo

        Ken, I think there are a lot of people in the country who wonder much the same thing. With the sesquicentennial of the Civil War upon us, it’s interesting and troubling to see the things that led up to that time. It didn’t happen overnight, but was the result of a sum of experiences that happened over many years. I honestly believe that we are heading towards a very ugly place and time. I don’t know if I’ll live to see it, but as time goes on I believe more and more that perhaps I will. It won’t be like the Civil War with armies and campaigns. We have in our country stood by while a concerted effort has been made to dismantle and diminish our culture and our peoples’ respect in our laws and institutions. We have sporting events like the soccer game in LA this week where 90,000 people boo our own team, and disrupt the Star Spangled Banner. We have boys like these who defile the flag. Our old people and children are frightened and humiliated at security checkpoints. Our leaders on both sides are more interested in political theater than in representing the people and doing their business. Like Forrest Gump, I’m not a smart man, but I know what’s in the hearts of my own people. And I feel with all my heart and mind that we are on the way to an ugly place, and as you say, Prep and Pray, my friend. Indded. Best to you , etc,

      • Dave Donaldson

        Thank You Brian. I think that these teenagers that think there are no consequences for the actions could learn a great deal by listening to you and your message.

  • Brad

    I blame the parents. No BS. Its their responsibility to teach their kids how great we have it. Otherwise they take it for granted. Who did you vote for on American Idol? Thats all this generation cares about. We need to wake up, the giant has been asleep too long. Get the liberals out of our PUBLIC schools. I really dont care if you have a problem with me saying that.

    • BitterClinger

      Parents can bear the blame some or even most of the time, but not always. There are great parents whose kids become rebellious, act like di**s, and reject everything their parents have taught them. Especially if these kids are sent to college, where liberal thought abounds and all things decent and conservative are derided and demonized. It kind of works like a cult, the first thing you’re taught in a cult is to hate your parents and everything they ever told you. Parents are always blamed, but sometimes it’s really not their fault. Besides, I’m pretty sure that these kids know the difference between right and wrong.

  • mcsegeek1

    Nothing wrong here that a good whipping of these punks wouldn’t fix.

  • Rodger

    Destroy a gay parade float = hate crime
    Steal / destroy American flags = vandalism

  • Lee

    Have them wear sandwich board signs saying something like. “I vandalized the American flags displayed for this parade” and have them walk in the parade. Alone..in silence.

  • LarryG

    Send them to Mexico.

  • Krafty Wurker

    “Teens”? Yeah sure.

    The last place they should be is in the military.

    • BitterClinger

      Thank you for saying that. Too many people think that a good place for losers is the military, as if it were a bastion of losers and misfits. it’s true that the military can straighten out a lot of people in need of direction and purpose, but it’s no place for total losers.

  • bob

    thank the liberal media for constantly telling their minions how awful america is

  • Bob350

    It’s the parents It’s the parents It’s the parents. When I was a teenager I was pretty wild myself. It would have never occured to me to destroy and American Flag. My father, a WWII vet, would have really had a problem with that. I remember when I was young my father would allow me to stay up and watch boxing on Friday nights with him. After the boxing matches were over the station went off the air. Anyone remember that?? Well, they played the National Anthem with the American flag flying on the screen. My father would tell me to stand and put my hand over my heart until the Anthem was over.
    I spent 30+ years in the military and I still remember that and have a healthy respect for the American flag.
    It all started with my Father.

    • Larry Burdge

      YOU GOT IT,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, BOB350

    • Angela Hale

      True. I don’t know about you, but I also didn’t grow up in a world where I was taught in school that all that is wrong with America is the fault of our traditions, values and way of life. My school didn’t teach me that if my parents disciplined me for something that I have the right to call the police on them. I wasn’t taught to worship the Earth and disregard my parents and their “sky god”. We didn’t have multi-culturalism, we had a melting-pot; we didn’t have class-envy, we had hope and most importantly, we didn’t have an all-encompassing disdain for all things Religious, Good or Moral.

  • forrest

    This is what happens when kids are indoctrinated in our far left public “re” education system.

  • Anonymous

    disintegration of the family = disintegration of America.
    question : Where are the parents? Why are they not held responsible for 1. the actions of their children and 2. the proper raising of said offspring?

  • Frustrated

    Where can we donate to get more flags, hire more (temporary) enforcement to catch these creeps?

    • Kelroy

      Excellent post….where can we send flags/money? Why don’t they stake out the flags? Put a camera on them? Frustrated with ya!

  • bob terwilliger

    disintegration of the Family = disintegration of America
    Question: where are their parents?
    Why are the parents
    1. not held accountable for the actions of their children and
    2. not held accountable for the proper care and nurture of said offspring?

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