**SEE UPDATE AT BOTTOM OF ARTICLE**
Greenfield Indiana – Robert Willits is a Korean War Vet, his brother also fought in Korea but never made it home he is still listed on the rosters as MIA. Robert flies the flag that he fought for, and his brother died for, but now his HOA says it’s a violation and must come down.
A Korean war veteran in Greenfield says his flagpole stands for freedom. His homeowners association says the flagpole breaks the rules.
The dispute stems from American and Missing In Action flags in Robert and Judy Willits’ front yard.
The couple moved to the Fieldstone neighborhood last Christmas. This summer they installed the flagpole.
“It means a lot to me. We fought for that flag,” Robert Willits said.
Both Robert and his brother, Lester, served in the Korean War. Robert was injured. Lester never came home.
“Lester is still there. So I’m going to keep it up,” Robert Willits said.
Last month, the Fieldstone Homeowners Association sent a letter to the couple saying they were in violation of the covenants and restrictions of the neighborhood.
The association offered to fly the MIA flag from the community flagpole and said Willits could hang the American flag from a bracket above the garage. The other option: keep the flag where it is and pay a $500 fine to cover legal fees.
Robert Willits says he won’t pay the fine, and the flags are staying put.
“With the penalties they’ve imposed on us, I feel it’s really un-American for somebody that is 100 percent disabled vet,” Judy Willits said.
“No. I am not taking it down,” Willits said. “That flag is for the freedom of every person in here. It represents freedom.”
A group of Hoosier veterans demonstrated around the flagpole Monday afternoon in support of the Willits family and their flags.
The homeowners association says they are still deciding what to do next if the Willits refuse to pay or take it down.
Both sides have hired attorneys.
The Fieldstone Homeowners Association responded and said the flagpole, surrounded by a bed of seasonal flowers, is a lovely setup. But it’s also against the rules – ones that others have been asked to follow, said Kaye Eckert, president of the homeowners association.
“It is displayed beautifully,” she said. “We couldn’t ask for any more – if they were allowed.”
We reached out to the Fieldstone HOA with no response as of yet: Fieldstone
(Courtesy of Fox59) – Hancock County Prosecuting Attorney Michael Griffin has taken notice, and says he will get involved if the Fieldstone homeowners association (HOA) doesn’t back down by Saturday.
In a letter to the HOA board of directors, Griffin said he will file suit if the issue is not resolved promptly.
“You may (rescind the letter and make amends for actions taken) by Saturday, November 1, 2014. After that date, I will have no choice but to file suit to enjoin the board from enforcing the actions taken in its letters dated September 9 and October 18. If the suit is successful, state statute requires me to pursue further legal proceedings to collect costs from the board.”
Mr. Griffin you sir are my new hero, after reading this letter, if more people were like Mr. Griffin these issues would never arise. In the last sentences of the letter he tells the HOA that the Willits may have been willing to accept some sort of compromise, but he is not. He is demanding they rescind the letter and issue a full apology to the Willits. Please let Mr. Griffin know how we truly appreciate him stepping in and taking care of this situation!!!
Mr. Griffith we are truly grateful for the stance you have taken in this situation!