Flag Vandalism Spurs Neighbors to Support Chuck

Dexter Street residents show solidarity for veteran neighbor who lost his flags.

Ed and Erin Turner felt like they had to do something when their elderly neighbor, Chuck Loughery, fell victim to late-night vandals.

Early Sunday morning, someone ripped out the five American flags Loughery, in his 80s, displays in front of his Dexter Street home.

"Chuck is a guy who wants no recognition. He's just a patriotic guy, and he loves to fly his flags," said Erin, a seven-year resident and mother of one. "I thought, let's go grab some flags of our own and show that Chuck means something to us."

Loughery—with his late wife Teresa, who grew up in the house—raised his six children on Dexter Street, in between fighting as a marine in the Pacific during World War II, serving as a Philadelphia Police officer and working security. 

Though the Turners, both in education, are new to Manayunk compared to Loughery's legacy, the family has pride in its block, despite the occasional headaches. Erin said her car was broken into, had its mirror ripped off a few times and some Halloween pumpkins have gotten stolen. Still, the Turners love Manayunk.

"We wanted a neighborhood with a suburban feel but also with urban touches and also walkable," she said. "When we had our baby, people brought us food. People say hi. It's that neighborhood you hope for."

On Sunday Ed grabbed a cup of coffee on Loughery's porch and found out about the vandalism. Later, he discovered two of Chuck's flags stuck into gunk at the construction site along Manayunk Avenue.

Loughery quickly replaced the ensigns, but the situation seemed incomplete to the Turners.

They had doubts about filing police reports for a relatively minor incident but didn't want to pass this by. The idea struck them—do like Chuck and fly flags both for America and Manayunk.

"As I was driving home yesterday, I realized that Roxborough and Manayunk, more than a lot of neighborhoods, has a good deal of patriots. It seems crazy to me that flags would be a target of vandalism," she said.

"Ideally, the person(s) responsible would be found or would come forward, but that’s pretty unlikely.  What might be nice, though, would be to encourage more folks around the Roxborough/Manayunk neighborhoods to also fly flags on the outside of their homes."

So at Roxborough-Manayunk Patch, we're encouraging you to fly an American flag in support of Chuck and in support of the neighborhood. Feel free to post pictures directly to this article or email samfran@patch.com.

Beth O'Connell July 18, 2012 at 09:37 PM
I know Chuck,I would assume most Dexter St. people do! I am proud he loves the American flag and sorry for the culpret or more that took his flags. Everyone needs to practice respect for each other, fly a flag, wave hello or make the time to get involved. Yea to the Turners for caring!!!
J. September 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM
The theft should be reported. Crime statistics only show the reported crime. More then likely there are 10 times more crimes that are not reported, for many reasons including people feel in many cases that the Police can't or won't do anything about it. The difference between serious and none serious crime is: When it happens to you it is serious, when it happens to somebody else it's not serious, it's just "minor mischief" "minor theft." This crime should be reported to the Police and the thieves and vandals who perprtrated this crime should be arrested. How much other damage did these scum bags do that was not reported. No it is not a "Federal case" as this is the responsibility of local Law Enforcement. basically the seniors in the area are left to fend for themselves. God bless nice people like Mr. & Mrs. Ed and Erin Turner who helped their elderly neighbor, "Chuck Loughery, who fell victim to late-night vandals." These are not "simple cases" to the victims of these crimes. If the cases are so simple why don't the Police arrest the perpetrators when the crimes are reporterd. These morons committing these crimes are not rocket scientists. Report all crime to the Police.
J. September 30, 2012 at 02:56 PM
Report vandalism to the Police first. There are morons doing millions of dollars worth of vandalism marking up this area with graffiti on Street signs, Utility poles, mailboxs, private property etc. Look it up, graffiti and graffiti cleanup in our area is costing the tax payers millions of dollars. In the areas of the City where these laws are enforced it has been found the perperpetrators are not tens of thousands of teenagers running with paint brushes and spray cans's of paint. Recently in the North East section of the City the Police locked up a 40 year old moron for doing millions of dollars worth of graffiti damage. The responsibilty of apprehending vandals is the responsibility of the Police no matter how hard the Police in our area try to shift the responsibility to the 311 operators. Call 311 for the cleanup but the Police for the vandalism. Ms. Fischer your advice is good about calling 311, but for crimes call 911 first. Right now it is true that a landllord can buy a row home with one bathroom and rent it to eight people not related and make a fortune. However people that own their homes and live in this area, are going to eventually find out in the near future that their homes are worth nothing as the graffiti and vandalism in our area that has reached epidemic proportions. Graffiti causes crime and fear of crime. We can't keep talking about how nice the neighborhood is when it is plastered with graffiti. We all should be concerned about this problem.
J. September 30, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Sam Fran: Thank you for posting this article. It is news as a matter of fact people are more interested in what is going on in their neighborhood then they are about other world news issues such as wild elephants in Africa. It is very important work that you and Patch are doing by keeping us informed and you have many supporters on Patch. This incident was not a minor crime. I'm sure this incident could have escalated if the thieves were discovered by the wrong old man who caught them in the act. As the word elderly and infirmity are two different things and this may not have worked out in the thieves favor. A lot of these so called elderly men still living in our area are combat veterans experienced in hand to hand combat and they did not get old by accident. Contrary to popular belief many of them are not infirmed. Maybe one day these thieves will target the wrong old man. It happens frequently that an old man or his property is targeting by thugs and caught in the act and it does not work out well for the perpetrators in many of those crimes. Look it up on u-tube and find out what happens when scumbags target the wrong old man. Sam, thanks again please continue to keep the people in our neighborhood informed.
Alawishes J. Kornberg September 30, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Sam Fran: Keep up the good work keeping the people in the neighborhood informed. This article is news. One day these thieves and vandals will target the wrong old man. These thugs confuse old age with infirmity and sometimes they learn the difference, the hard way of course but nevertheless they learn. Mr. & Mrs .Ed and Erin Turner are great neighbors. Were all lucky to have them both in our neighborhood. Great article Sam.


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