Another day, another act of vandalism goes widely underreported.
Sometime in the evening on Thursday, more than a dozen grave markers were covered in offensive graffiti, including swastikas and racial slurs.
But the markers in the historic Goodyear Farms Cemetery weren't the only ones to be tagged; benches were also covered in racial slurs.
Carol Santos, whose family's remains rest in graves in the West Valley cemetery, said that the bench near her family's final resting place was marked.
“It just hurt, just like a knife stabbed me," Santos said.
The cemetery is the last resting place for several migrant farmers who picked cotton for tires during World War I, volunteer Kathi Soria told reporters, making this story even more heartbreaking as those who had the terrible idea of tagging these graves appear to have no respect for the memory of hard migrant workers. Many who were buried in the historic cemetery were also victims of the flu epidemic in 1918.
“On one hand, it could be kids being kids — on the other hand is even scarier," Mike Segovia, who has family buried in the cemetery, said. “Either side is wrong.”
“We are deeply saddened and shocked by this outrageous incident. Such acts of intolerance and hate will not be condoned in our community, and we hope that those involved will be brought to justice,” Avondale Mayor Kenn Weise said. “On behalf of the Avondale City Council, our hearts go out to the families and the descendants of those buried at the Goodyear Farms Cemetery. The city of Avondale stands by you."
Officers with the Avondale Community Action Team have already initiated an investigation into this matter, but so far, no suspects have been found.
As the country struggles with President Donald Trump's misguided policies and immigrants begin to fear for their lives and safety, people continue to report feeling divided — these attacks on cemeteries aren't making anything easier.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters