A site of local patriotism has been vandalized.
Eagle Pass, about 10 miles outside Cody on the south side of the Greybull Highway, has for more than a decade served as home to a roughly 20-foot-high flagpole brandishing the American flag. On Feb. 3 Greybull resident Richard Enes went to check on the site and found the flag stolen and the pole bent at an angle. A light used to illuminate the flag in the undeveloped area was also taken.
Enes saw various tire marks surrounding the flag left in a circular fashion, resembling a vehicle spinning donuts around it.
“It breaks my heart to see people disrespect patriotism,” Enes said. “It’s vandalism to me.”
Enes said he thought it was an act of people who hate America.
According to the Greybull Standard story, he submitted a report to the Park County Sheriff’s Office.
The pole has a distinct dent mark in it that could only have been caused by a heavy object like a truck hitting it.
The flagpole is located at the Eagle Pass Interpretive Site on BLM land. Greybull resident Lee Snyder said the family of a deceased veteran started putting up a small flag at the site about 10-15 years ago. He said the Greybull American Legion eventually got permission from the BLM to put up a larger flagpole and flag.
“We thought if a fixed pole was up high enough you couldn’t get to it,” Snyder said.
Enes and Snyder as well as other Greybull residents change the flag and help maintain the site on a routine basis.
“None of us have ever asked for donations, but now we’re in a bind,” Enes said.
Enes said in addition to being a site that honors America, people often camp at Eagle Pass in the summer, with great recreational opportunities nearby and views of Carter Mountain to the west and the Bighorn Mountains to the east.
Although he didn’t serve in the military, both of Enes’ children did, and he also lost a few friends in the Vietnam War. His son Dwain Enes served 21 years in the Air Force. His daughter Roberta Enes was a medic in the Navy.
I’m not going to give up,” Enes said through tears. “I’d be letting my kids down if I did that.”
He said the flagpole needs to be replaced and he’d like to replace it with an even larger pole and flagpole.
“We’ve got to make it bigger and better,” he said. “I’m not going to let these vandals win this situation. I’m not going to lay down and take this.”
To donate to Enes’ cause, contact him at (307) 388-8862.