FOLSOM (CBS13) – Devan McInerney awoke at the dawn’s early light to find her family’s flag wasn’t there.
“I was absolutely in tears. I was in tears. I was so upset,” she said.
Someone had swiped the stars and stripes from the front of her Folsom home overnight leaving only cut zip ties that held the flag behind.
“It really hurts, and it really sucks, and it really makes me angry,” she said.
The McInerney’s posted the crime to their Facebook, and the local VFW commander rushed over to replace it.
“I’m so proud to help our community,” said Pearl Wood, Army veteran and VFW Commander. “It makes a huge difference to me and members of Veterans Hall that we can go out and help community members, especially with something like losing a flag that’s close to our hearts.”
But it’s the memories behind the flag that are irreplaceable. It belonged to her grandfather Lynn Featherstone, a Vietnam vet who recently passed away.
“Grandpa Featherstone meant a lot to me, and it’s the only thing that I have from him, so yeah it meant a lot to me.”
Ryan McInerney is a vet himself and is surprised this type of crime would happen in their neighborhood, a place so patriotic that many homes have flags and the streets are named after fallen members of the military.
“I hope that they are at least treating it with respect and flying it properly. If they needed it more than me and they needed a flag, then so be it, but if they’re doing something wrong with it or treating it like dirt or having it on the ground or burning it somewhere I’m gonna be pissed,” he said.
The couple has been overwhelmed by the community support.
“My God, the responses came in by the dozens,” he said.
Now they’re hoping the thief will be brave enough to return it to their home.
“Drop it in the bed of my truck in my driveway or just throw it over my fence or whatever you need to do, no questions asked, no repercussions, I’d love to have a back,” he said.
Back to once again proudly fly their grandfather’s broad stripes and bright stars.
Sadly, this isn’t the first time a flag has been stolen in Folsom. The commander tells me she keeps a stack of American flags nearby just in case it happens again.