Huntsville veteran's memorial bench stolen

The family told us the bolted-down bench was stolen some time ago and now the city is on the lookout

Posted: Nov 11, 2019 8:19 PM
Updated: Nov 11, 2019 8:20 PM

One family is asking for help after they believe someone stole a memorialized bench to honor their late father.

The bench was placed at the Aldridge Creek green way in the Hampton Cove area.

Family members told us their father died 14 years ago, and was a veteran.

He visited the green way often.

The Mansfeldt family told WAAY-31 it feels like a piece of their father is gone.

They said they just want whoever took it to bring it back.

"I'm thinking someone is going to bring it back. I'm going to walk down there and it'll be there. I just can't believe it, but what can you do," said Kathy Skibinski.

Skibinski said her father walked the trails at the Aldridge Park green way every day before his death 14 years ago.

The family realized the paths lacked benches for people to rest, so in 2006 they put a memorial bench in their father's name on a trail.

"We thought it would just be the best way to memorialize him by providing a place for runners and bikers and bicyclers and walkers to rest during those really hot days," said Skibinski.

When they learned the bolted down bench was ripped from the ground, they were heartbroken.

On a day the nation pauses to thank veterans for their service, Skibinski says her family has their father on their mind.

Monday is the anniversary of his death, and she's thankful for the community's help on social media and has this message for the possible thief.

"A plaque was on there. A memorial. They knew that it was put there for something very special," she said.

The family told us they have no idea who might have taken the bench and said no one's tried to steal it before.

We reached out to the city of Huntsville parks and recreation, since they're in charge of the green way.

They told us they're aware the bench has been stolen, and are in the process of filing a report with Huntsville police.

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