A memorial in Providence to nine U.S. Marines from Rhode Island who were killed in the 1983 terrorist bombing of their barracks in Beirut that killed 241 Marines was vandalized over the weekend.
Two glass panels etched with the portraits of two of the Marines were shattered, seven others were left untouched. The display is part of a memorial to the Marines along the Providence River.
“For somebody to do this, it’s absolutely senseless,” said State Representative Samuel Azzinaro. “There’s no reason in the world why anyone would want to destroy a picture of a Marine that died 39 years ago.”
Azzinaro, a Westerly Democrat, chairs the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, and told WPRO’s Gene Valicenti that police were investigating the vandalism.
“It’s just disgusting,” said a man who would only give his name as Bob. He was visiting the memorial Monday afternoon, and said he knew family members of at least one of the fallen Marines.
“What kind of mind does someone have to do this. I mean, it’s sad. It’s just a sign of the times, everybody with upheaval,” he said.
He added that he is confident that family and friends of the Marines would come together to ensure that the memorial is restored.