HAVERHILL, MASS. (WHDH) - Veterans and their loved ones are upset after the Korean War Veterans Memorial in downtown Haverhill was vandalized last week.

Someone smashed one of the six LED lights that are used to illuminate the memorial at night, according to 89-year-old Korean War veteran Russell Chaput. Each light is valued at $500.

“They threw a rock at it,” Chaput said. “It’s a darn shame. I can’t see why their mind is like that.”

Chaput, who served in the Korean War as a 20-year-old Army corporal, helped fellow veterans raise money to build and maintain the monument. It displays the names of 16 Haverhill natives who died in the war.

“There people who gave their lives to make us free and that’s the biggest thing,” Chaput said. “We have to keep that going.”

Chaput serves at the treasurer, secretary, and caretaker of the monument. He is now looking to raise money for an ongoing maintenance fund and wants to eventually turn the monument over to a younger committee because just three of the veterans who helped build it are still alive.

“We’re going to pass on and we have to turn this over to somebody to use,” Chaput said. “I’d rather keep it private hands.”

Chaput says he hopes to have the damaged repaired within a few weeks.

Donations to the Korean War Memorial Maintenance Fund can be sent to Haverhill Bank, 180 Merrimack St., Haverhill, MA 01830.

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