Weyers Cave Volunteer Fire Company estimates thousands in damage from weekend vandalism

Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 7:41 PM EDT
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WEYERS CAVE, Va. (WHSV) - The Weyers Cave Volunteer Fire Company was the victim of vandalism over the weekend. The fire company’s lawn party kitchen was broken into and vandalized causing thousands of dollars of damage.

“Saturday evening our fire chief was taking the trash out for the firehouse and noticed that the lights were on down at the lawn party grounds in the building we use as a kitchen to serve food. That’s when we discovered there had been a break-in,” said Ian Heatwole, President of the Weyers Cave Volunteer Fire Company.

Volunteers have already begun to clean up the building and the damage was significant.

“We had three cash registers that were destroyed and one of our freezers, the glass door on our freezer was destroyed. Other than that most of the damage was to supplies and inventory and not so much equipment which is good although they took a bite of some of the more expensive equipment,” said Heatwole.

The fire company estimates the total cost to replace the destroyed equipment and fix the damages will be between $5,000 and $6,000.

“The first part of our next year’s lawn party and other fundraising events up until then kind of goes to get us back to even to replace the damage that was done. So it’s certainly not insurmountable but we’re kind of having to raise the funds twice we’ll say,” said Heatwole.

The break-in was not the first instance of recent vandalism at the Weyers Cave Ruritan Memorial Park. Two bathrooms at the park were vandalized earlier in the week.

“There’s been kind of a spate of vandalism on the lawn party grounds in the last week. This is the first time they’ve got into our building but I know there’s kind of been a little bit of an uptick of that in that last week or so. It just kind of fits the pattern of youthful exuberance,” said Heatwole.

Two teenagers were seen fleeing the park area on Saturday afternoon. The fire company urges anyone with information about the vandalism or who lives nearby and has security cameras to contact the Augusta County Sheriff’s Office.

The Augusta County Sheriff’s Office is handling the investigation but had no updates it could give on Monday.