Defaced Military Grave Markers Recovered With Stolen Truck - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

Defaced Military Grave Markers Recovered With Stolen Truck In Tulsa

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The bronze plaques were found buried in a trailer full of stuff, which was being pulled by a stolen truck. The bronze plaques were found buried in a trailer full of stuff, which was being pulled by a stolen truck.
Brandon Earl Powell, 28, a transient, was arrested March 14 in possession of a stolen truck with a trailer attached. The trailer contained several stolen grave markers of U.S. soldiers. Brandon Earl Powell, 28, a transient, was arrested March 14 in possession of a stolen truck with a trailer attached. The trailer contained several stolen grave markers of U.S. soldiers.
Storey Wrecking General Manager Wayne Pierce. Storey Wrecking General Manager Wayne Pierce.
The grave markers belong to five men, most likely strangers, who had one thing in common: they were all soldiers in the U.S. Army. The grave markers belong to five men, most likely strangers, who had one thing in common: they were all soldiers in the U.S. Army.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

They're no longer in the hands of thieves, but it will take some work to get military grave markers pried from the headstones of U.S. soldiers back where they belong.

An employee with Storey Wrecker Service discovered five plaques of honor this week, but they're in bad shape.

"Well, somebody started grinding the numbers down off the birth date of that one," said Storey Wrecker General Manager Wayne Pierce.

Pierce said the bronze plaques were found on a full trailer attached to a stolen 1995 Dodge Dakota that was towed in a few days ago.

"I guess somebody had stolen [the markers] to try to get the value of metal out of them," Pierce said.

There was also a welding machine on that trailer. Pierce said the thief probably used that to try to cut the plates down, possibly to disguise what they were, in hopes a scrap yard would pay for the metal.

"It's just crazy that somebody could deface something like that," Pierce said.

Brandon Earl Powell, 28, a transient, was arrested in the 1700 block of East Pine Street on March 14 and was arrested on a complaint of possession of a stolen vehicle. Storey Wrecker came to tow away the vehicle and trailer.

Pierce said he filed a police report and called Veteran Affairs, and neither was aware of the stolen plaques. He said the VA is paying for the markers to be shipped to D.C., where they'll be replaced.

"We just want to get them back where they're supposed to be, and if there's a family out there that's missing them, at least they'll know where they're at and get them back so they'll hopefully get some closure," Pierce said.

The grave markers belong to five men, most likely strangers to each other, who had one thing in common -- they were all soldiers in the U.S. Army.

Private Fred Moore, Sergeant Larry White and Technician Fourth Grade Leron Grant served in World War II. Private Lueverdis Taylor and Private First Class Robert Hill served in Korea. They are five heroes who Pierce said deserve better than to be degraded in death.

"We take it pretty personal when somebody messes with veterans," Pierce said.

News On 6 did an Internet search that showed the markers may have been stolen from Memorial Park Cemetery in Tulsa.

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