General Crime

* Monument honoring the victims of the 1991 Oakland Hills firestorm was vandalized

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A monument honoring the victims of the 1991 Oakland Hills firestorm was vandalized over the weekend, according to the Oakland Landscape Committee, which oversees the monument’s maintenance. Sometime between Saturday night and early Sunday morning, someone cut off five metal bars from a sculpture in the Firestorm Memorial Garden, located at the end of Highway 13 at the entrance of Hiller Highlands in Oakland, landscape committee Chair Gordon Piper said.

The sculpture is meant to depict burned trees and trees in the process of growing in the wake of the 1991 firestorm, which killed 25 people and burned about 3,000 homes. The weekend vandalism is the third time the hillside sculpture has been vandalized since 2010, Piper said. “It’s like dancing on the grave of those that lost their lives in the Oakland Hills firestorm to deface this memorial sculpture,” he said.

The landscape committee has filed a police report and hopes that implementing video surveillance in the area might help advance the investigation. Piper said the committee hopes to raise about $5,000 in order to fund video surveillance and to restore the broken sculpture. Tax-deductible donations for the monument may be sent to the Oakland Landscape Committee at 33 Hiller Drive in Oakland, with checks made payable to the Friends of Oakland Parks and Recreation.

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