PLAINFIELD, IL (STMW) — A southwest suburban VFW commander has his suspicions about who sprayed a swastika on his garage, but he doesn’t quite understand the rationale behind the second such incident in three months.
“I’m not a Nazi. I’m not a white supremacist,” Jim Singler said Wednesday about the the vandalism to his garage in the Carillon Lakes retirement community in unincorporated area northeast of Plainfield.
Singler, 65, commander of VFW Post 12059 of Carillon, was awakened by a neighbor early Wednesday and told someone had “left a message” on his house.
Will County Sheriff’s police said the message consisted of the words “Nazi Get Out” across the top of the garage door, with a 4-foot diameter swastika in black over red paint, sheriff’s office spokeswoman Kathy Hoffmeyer said.
Singler said the vandalism took place between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. Wednesday.
Sheriff’s police are investigating the incident, which they and Singler believe is related to a similar incident in December. “It’s not the first time this has happened,” Singler said.
On Dec. 2, 2010, a swastika was sprayed in black paint on the garage of VFW vice commander Rolf Seidel in the 20000 block of Blossom Lane in unincorporated DuPage Township, Hoffmeyer said. There were no words written in that incident.
Police have no suspects, but Singler said he has a pretty good idea of the culprit.
“I think it is a disgruntled, unqualified former member of the group,” he said, referring to a man who was kicked out of the VFW by the national organization. “He was stripped of his membership. I really think this is misguided anger over that.”
That happened last year, he said, before the swastikas appeared, and before Singler’s Ford F-150 pickup was keyed outside a VFW meeting in January.
Singler, who has been post commander for five years, said he is “very mad” over the incidents, but has no hard evidence as to who is to blame.
“I am not a Nazi or a white supremacist, so I don’t know where this is coming from,” said Singler, a Vietnam veteran of the 101th Airborne, an honored member of the VFW and a member of the DAV.
Police are investigating and said private surveillance cameras have been installed at both Singler’s and Seidel’s homes.
Singler just wants the problem to go away. “I am undeserving of this kind of treatment,” he said.
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