‘I just can't understand some people’ – Tony Foulds devastated after vandals damage Mi Amigo memorial
Tony Foulds – the Sheffield man who for years has looked after Endcliffe Park’s ‘Mi Amigo’ memorial to 10 US airmen who lost their lives in the Second World War – said he ‘sat down on the floor and cried’ when he saw the damage that had been done to it.
Earlier today, police confirmed that the memorial had been badly damaged on Tuesday as an estimated 7,000 people descended on the park on the hottest day of the year so far.
Tony later told The Star that vandals had in fact ripped the memorial’s two biggest flags off their poles so they couldn’t be reused and then dumped them on the floor, leaving the 83-year-old Lowedges man devastated.
He said: “I don’t know if they are people who don't like America but I am really upset about it. First the council pulled one of the trees down and now someone has done this.
“I just can't understand some people. The memorial is there to be looked at and so people can say a prayer – not to be damaged.”
Tony was in the park the day the American warplane came down killing all 10 crew members and has been looking after the memorial since it was enshrined in 1969.
In 2019, a flypast of British and US warplanes was organised by BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker to mark Tony’s devotion to the memorial and the men it remembers.
But Tony says he refuses to be beaten by the vandals and intends to replace the damaged flags with new ones on Thursday.
He said: “I sat down on the floor and had a cry when I saw what they had done but they will not beat me. Not after how long I have looked after that memorial for.
"There were meant to be 7,000 people in the park yesterday and there will only be two or three which have done this. But I would never have done anything like this and I was no angel when I was young.”
In a statement, police said they were reviewing CCTV to see if the culprits could be identified.
They also urged people to follow the coronavirus rules over the Easter weekend and think of others by taking litter home with them.