VILLAGE OF HAMBURG, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Pride flag hanging outside DeaLea Photography in the Village of Hamburg was found in a park with visible holes and burns, according to the business owner.
Deanna Kroll-Haeick and her wife Katya noticed the flag was missing on Sunday. On Monday, they were told a DPW worker found the missing flag in the park across the street with burn attempts.
"I was hoping that this was an act that was committed by someone who just didn't have an awareness or an understanding of what it meant to us," said Katya Kroll-Haeick. "Now to see that it was intentionally attempted to be burned and destroyed is heartbreaking. Deanna said on our way back, to see something that symbolizes our life, and our love, and our family just so horribly to be attempted to be burned and destroyed, it's tough to find the words."
The temporary loss of one pride flag in the Village of Hamburg is resulting in many more permanent flags. Kroll-Haeick said the couple purchased 200 flags to hand out to friends, family, and anyone in Hamburg that wants one.
The couple said the community has been very supportive, people have reached out to replace the flag and install a sturdier holder. While there's no flag flying yet, people passing by will see rainbow drawings in the window that the children of a friend made after hearing what had happened.
The couple said they filed a police report on Sunday when the flag initially went missing, and have returned the flag to police as evidence.