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HOA reverses decision on statue honoring vets

8:59 PM, Dec 3, 2013   |    comments
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VALRICO, Fla. -- A retired army veteran facing fines from his HOA after refusing to remove a statue honoring military veterans has won his fight.

"My 23 years in the service has taught me a lot about respect and what my country means to me," said Don Oglesby who now works for SOCOM at MacDill Air Force Base.

It's no surprise after dedicating most of his adult life to serving his country Oglesby wanted a way to visibly honor the men and women who fought for our freedoms.

"It means a lot. A lot of people give up their lives on a daily basis to give everyone their freedoms and what they do."

That's why it was so ironic when the HOA representing Oglesby's Erin Arbor community said he wasn't allowed to display the statue in his own front yard calling it "offensive, unsightly and a nuisance to the community".

"I was a little taken aback that someone could have that kind of thought from seeing something like that in your yard," said a clearly stunned Oglesby.

Comments poured in after our story first aired Monday night on 10 News at 11.

Susan Seaman wrote on our 10 News Facebook page, "The HOA needs to open their eyes. The statue is a wonderful tribute to veterans."

Becky Cosgrove wrote, "The only thing I find offensive... is the opinion and actions of the HOA. Shame on them!"

Apparently the message got through. Tuesday afternoon board members reversed their decision.

"I got a call about 1:30," said Oglesby with a smile.

An employee of the property management company that runs Erin Arbor says board members were convinced after listening to their residents and the community as a whole.

"I'm grateful. I do actually want to thank the board for reversing their decision and allow me to keep it and not go through the fight. I just think cooler heads prevailed and I'm just honored to have it here."


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