Put-in-Bay Monument PhotoPut-in-Bay, Ohio –May 18, 2017 – The Put-in-Bay Monument was vandalized on or about May 13th, 2017. The Lake Erie Heritage Foundation is raising the reward to $2,500 for any information leading to the identification, arrest, and conviction of those responsible. Put-in-Bay Monument is located at Put-in-Bay Ohio. Special Agents with the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch (ISB) and US Park Rangers are investigating the case, which occurred on or about May 13, 2017.

According to their reports, an unknown person or persons scaled a fence to enter an area closed for restoration. The perpetrators vandalized the final resting place of Lt. John Brooks, Midshipman Henry Laub and Midshipman John Clark. These American officers fought and died in the Battle of Lake Erie and were interred on September 11, 1913. They are the main reason the 352-foot tall memorial was built on the Lake Erie Island, and US Park Rangers learn their names early in their duty assignment at Put-in-Bay.

“This reprehensible act of vandalism at this sacred memorial tomb and national monument sickens all Americans who stand to this day as one voice in defense of our country,” said David Zavagno, president of The Lake Erie Heritage Foundation.  “In 2013 we celebrated the bicentennial and recognized once again the many sacrifices of Oliver Hazard Perry and his men who fought and died for our ideals as a young nation.

The Lake Erie Heritage Foundation will double the bounty being offered for information leading to the arrest of those individual(s) responsible for this heinous act.” The  Put-in-Bay Monument honors these men and celebrates the enduring peace between nations. In less than two weeks Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial will honor these men, along with all our veterans, at a Memorial Day Program on Monday, May 29 at 11 am. Until then there’s only one question to be answered: Who would disrespect the national memorial where these brave men were laid to rest 104 years ago? If you have information that could help investigators, please contact us. Though you may remain anonymous, investigators are offering up to $2,500 for information leading to the identification, arrest, and conviction of those responsible.

The Put-in-Bay Monument was established at Put-in-Bay to honor those who fought and died in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812 and to celebrate the long-lasting peace between the United States, Great Britain, and Canada. The Memorial, a Doric column, rising 352 feet over the Lake Erie Island is situated 5 miles from the longest undefended border in the world. For more information about Perry’s Victory visit www.nps.gov/pevi, or stay current at the Put-in-Bay Ohio Facebook Page.

About the National Park Service, More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for the 417 parks in the National Park System and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities.  Lake Erie Heritage Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit with a mission of supporting the maritime history of Lake Erie brought forth and recorded as the Battle of Lake Erie that took place on September 10, 1813. Through events, seminars and educational materials we work to promote the importance of the lake as a public, historical and cultural resources. The Lake Erie Heritage Foundation, Inc., working in conjunction with The Perry Group supports the Battle of Lake Erie History through the participation, fundraising and Sponsorship Opportunities.