© Eric McCarthy/Journal Pioneer
Vance Easter, centre, his son Random and wife June are shown in this TC Media file photo. A year and half after the couple had an accidental fire in their welding shop, the shop and their home has been struck by vandals.
UNIONVALE — A Unionvale couple is still reeling from the shock of vandals running amok at their home and business Saturday morning.
June Easter was awakened after 1:30 a.m. by the sound of breaking glass in her dining room. That, she speculates, was the “wake-up call” from vandals who had already committed thousands of dollars of property damage in the Western Welding shop she and her husband, Vance, own, and to vehicles parked out front.
In the welding shop hose lines were cut on two portable welders, paint was poured on tools, equipment and welding projects, and tanks for the welders were turned on.
Vandals, however, didn’t stop there. They smashed windows out of two farm tractors used for winter snowblowing contracts. Hose lines were cut on one of the tractors. Windows and windshields were smashed in the company’s welding truck and two other vehicles in the yard and a cruiser-style speedboat also sustained damage.
Windows on the side of the building and in the shop door were smashed.
Only some of the loss is covered by insurance. Easter said she is still taking inventory to determine what might be missing, but she admits damage in the shop is likely in the thousands of dollars.
An accident in that shop in 2011 put Vance into hospital for more than a year. During that incident, he was severely burned and continues to have mobility problems and limited vision.
Although devastated by Saturday's attack, the couple said they are finding comfort in the outpouring of support from members of the community.