Heartless vandalism with NASHOS plaque stolen from Victoria Park

Today, members of the St Marys National Servicemen’s Association (NASHOS) were joined by Melissa McIntosh MP, Federal Member for Lindsay, at Victoria Park in St Marys after reports of the bronze Memorial plaque having been stolen from its sandstone base.

The plaque was originally placed at a dedication ceremony in 2006, after the St Marys NASHOS had applied and were successfully granted Federal funding for the Memorial and its installation.

Further restoration work of the Memorial and the installation of a memorial garden planted with rosemary bushes and a seat for people to enjoy the space was undertaken by Penrith City Council in 2020.

Penrith City Council are now assisting with the replacement of the Memorial plaque, with an exact replica that will be embedded into the sandstone.

“I visited the Australian National Serviceman’s Memorial in Victoria Park today with our local St Marys NASHOS, President Harry May, Vice President Roy Young, and Public Officer Graham Larkham, to inspect the vandalism that has taken place with the bronze plaque stolen from the memorial," said Mrs McIntosh.

“The NASHOS have given so much to our country, and are feeling absolutely heartbroken by this disgraceful act.

“Memorials provide a place for people to remember those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice with their lives. They should be respected, not heartlessly destroyed.

“This act of vandalism has been reported to police. Thankfully, the dedicated NASHOS are working hard with Penrith City Council to get the replica memorial plaque installed before the next ANZAC Day service.”

St Marys NASHOS President Harry May said the theft was a great disappointment to the local veteran's community.

“The Memorial has been here 18 years, and we’ve had a service every year since," said Mr May.

“Just as we were in the process of organising this year’s service, we got a call from Penrith City Council informing us of this devastating news that the plaque had been stolen.

“It’s very sad. I imagine whoever took it probably smashed it all up and it’s gone to the local scrap metal dealer, just for the value of the metal that it is made of.

“It’s just a shame for our local National Servicemen, if there was nothing here for our upcoming service, it would be devastating.”

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