CONNEAUT, Ohio--Numerous war veteran memorial markers were destroyed inside the Malek Arboretum on Parrish Road in Conneaut when a teenage city worker ran over them with a lawnmower.
The small metal markers and posts were flattened, twisted and torn apart by the blades.
Multiple saplings planted next to the markers were also mowed down.
City Manager James Hockaday tells Fox 8 News a 19-year-old seasonal employee admitted to causing the damage and could have faced criminal charges.
Instead the city is giving him a chance to make things right by paying for and replacing both the trees and tributes.
He also had to write an apology to the city and everyone personally affected by his actions.
In the letter the worker says that he is “deeply sorry for the damages,” but that he thought he “was helping by clearing a few of the numerous plants within the park.”
That has some residents questioning his sincerity, wondering how he didn’t see or hear the metal markers, which stand about a foot above ground as he ran them over.
“I mean he is 19; he should know better,“ said Bill Braden, “No respect anymore. That’s what’s wrong with the whole world as far as I’m concerned.”
Braden and others now just hope the employee sticks to his word and fixes the park.