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Monument stolen at fair

ROME TOWNSHIP — It was not quite the welcome fair-goers wanted to see when they arrived Monday morning at the Lawrence County Fairgrounds.

A monument to fallen soldiers had itself fallen victim to thieves.

The cement figurine with a helmet mounted on the stock of a gun, was missing from the fair entrance.

Dean Cooper, of Veterans of Foreign Wars 6878, said the monument was donated a couple of years ago. It stood with a monument to war dogs.

“You’ve got to be kind of low-down to do something like that,” Cooper said.

The monument weighed approximately 100 pounds and Cooper said it would probably have taken two people to

move it.

A prayer was offered during the opening ceremony that the person who took the monument would feel a twinge of conscience and bring it back.

Monday’s kickoff was followed by the queen and princess pageant, followed by the 4-H parade. VFW 6878 provided the gunnery salute and color guard.

The pledge of allegiance was recited and the National Anthem sung. Activities are scheduled throughout the week at the fairgrounds in Rome Township.

Following the opening ceremony, fair board members gathered at the vendor booth of “Mama” and John Rose, who have been fair vendors for 50 years — a record among Lawrence County vendors. The Roses, of Massillon, began as game vendors and later began offering food, fair board member Tony Herrell said.

Mama Rose said Lawrence County is her favorite fair and coming here is a chance to see friends — friends she became acquainted with decades ago.

“I love it here. I love Mousie (Albert Childers) and Mr. President (Doug Clark). I like the people,” she said.

Childers said the feeling is mutual.

“I wish all my concessioneers were as good and as committed as they are. They’re like family.”