Donations helping vandalized Austintown 9/11 park recover

9/11 Memorial Park will soon be getting security cameras, along with more than $3,000 from local organizations

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The Mahoning County 9/11 Memorial Park in Austintown is receiving some much appreciated donations after being vandalized two weeks ago.

The park — which had to shut down its chapel because of vandalism on April 8 — will soon be getting security cameras, along with more than $3,000 from local organizations.

“We’re starting to put the pieces of the puzzle together and make sure what needs to happen happens here,” said Austintown Trustee Jim Davis. “We’re really excited about it.”

9/11 Memorial Park runs solely on donations and volunteers.

This coming Monday, the Vienna Fire Department is giving $750, while Barry Dyngles will donate money from a 50/50 raffle plus more and Guardian Protection Services plans to install security cameras.

“[The raffle] didn’t quite bring in as much as we hoped,” said Doug Duganne of Barry Dyngles. “So the owner decided to up the donation to an even $2,500.”

“We definitely wanted to step up and get the ball rolling,” said Rich Sieman of Gaurdian Protection Services. “And provide them with some surveillance equipment so they could deter any more vandalism from occurring here.”

Due to the vandalism, the chapel door was close to falling off. People also put cigarettes out on the floor and cooked drugs using the candles.

The door has since been replaced and cameras will go up within the next 10 days.

Committee Member Pat Connolly said he still has an internal struggle with having to put cameras inside of the chapel, but he knows it needs to be done.

“I have a little bit of a problem with it,” he said. “But after what’s happened here within the last 10 months, I’m gonna allow the cameras to go in.”

Connolly added the money will also go toward maintenance around the park.