Military police at Canadian Forces Base Gagetown are investigating an act of vandalism after the tank at its main entrance was covered with profanity and swastikas over the long weekend.

The Sherman tank is now covered with a blue tarp as the investigation into who covered the monument with graffiti is continuing.

Vandals spray-painted the monument with the offensive symbols, profanity and the term "Pongo," a slang term for infantry soldiers.

The actions have offended many people living in Oromocto as well as veterans.

CFB Gagetown is Oromocto’s largest employer and the town is very sensitive to the vandalism.


Dick Isabelle, the chief administrative officer in Oromocto, said he finds the motive behind the vandalism hard to comprehend. (CBC)

"You know what great things the soldiers are doing, you know what great things the veterans have done for us," said Dick Isabelle, the town’s chief administrative officer.

"And to see people disrespect them that way is just really hard to comprehend a motive."

John Tringham stopped to take a look the covered tank on Tuesday afternoon. He is visiting Oromocto from London, Ont., this week, while attending his son’s military graduation

Tringham had strong words for the vandals.

"He’s here ... for the country, our country. He will help defend it and defend other countries and to have something like this — they are just cowards," Tringham said.

'It’s sort of a sacrilege because it’s there for a purpose to remember the past and the people that rode in them.' — Fred Barnaby, veteran

The vandalism was a hot topic at the weekly crib tournament at the Oromocto legion on Tuesday evening.

Patrick Parker, the president of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 93, said the actions of the vandals were "disgraceful."

"It’s disrespectful to all of the veterans but not only the veterans but to all the people in the community and in Canada," he said.

Fred Barnaby, a veteran, said defacing the tank is extremely offensive.

"It’s sort of a sacrilege because it’s there for a purpose to remember the past and the people that rode in them," Barnaby said.