Someone apparently used a crude Molotov cocktail to destroy the American flag that flew in front of city hall.
"Oh my goodness, I'm stunned," said Dorothy Corshaw, a member of the Martin-Osterholtz Veterans of Foreign Wars post in town. "I'm totally stunned. It just hurts my heart."
Corshaw, whose brother was a fighter pilot during the Vietnam War, said it is hard to understand why someone would do such a thing.
A deputy from the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office was called to City Hall early Tuesday morning to investigate the red, white, blue and black remnants.
He found parts of the flag melted to a rock in a fountain in front of City Hall, according to a sheriff's office report.
"The rock was covered in soot from the burned flag and had two smaller rocks on top of it, which were holding the flag down," the report said.
The deputy then inspected the area around the flag and found pieces of a broken and burned beer bottle.
The neck of the bottle was partially melted on landscaping stones around the fountain. It was wrapped with tape and had a burned rag sticking out of it, the deputy wrote.
A City Hall employee reported the vandalism early Tuesday morning.
He first discovered graffiti on the town's marquee and at City Hall.
One bit of graffiti said "ALL RISE" in black spray paint with a picture similar to a smiley face with a straight mouth and eyes that looked like musical notes.
Similar scrawl was found on a city park gazebo and at Gold Bar Elementary School.
After the deputy took photographs and collected evidence, volunteers scrubbed away the graffiti.
"One of the first rules about graffiti is you clean it up quickly," Gold Bar Mayor Joe Beavers said.
The mayor said the destruction of the American flag was particularly troubling.
"That has irritated a lot of people in town," Beavers said. "We have a lot of retired and ex-military living around here."
Anyone with information about the vandalism spree is asked to call the sheriff's office tipline at 425-388-3845.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org
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