Updated:REX, Ga. —
Police are trying to figure out who knocked over a monument dedicated to an ancestor of first lady Michelle Obama.
“When I saw it, I shed a few tears,” Vicki Smith told Channel 2’s Linda Stouffer.
Smith helped get the monument to Rex. It’s a tribute to Melvinia Shields, the great-great-great grandmother of Obama. Shields was born into slavery in 1844 and later moved to Georgia.
Clayton County Commissioner Sonna Singleton said the monument company will have to lift the heavy stone to check for cracks after someone pushed it off the foundation block.
“It was our little source of pride because here we are in little old Rex, Georgia, and we had ties to the White House, so there's pride in us for that,” Singleton said.
It was almost a year ago that the Clayton County community celebrated the monument's installation.
“We're going to believe just the way we showed that unity on that day here in Rex when we had the dedication of this memorial, we're going to believe that there's not that kind of hatred or dissension that someone would do this,” Singleton said.
Organizers had already organized a celebration to recognize the special history of the area. It was set for later this month. They hope to have the monument back up and fixed by then.