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Guilderland Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, September 23, 2010

VFW offers $500 reward for return of café soldier

ALTAMONT — In a show of support for Cindy Pollard, Altamont’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7062 is offering a $500 reward for the return of the soldier statue stolen from Pollard’s café in August.

“Cindy has always been good to the vets and we want to support her,” said Floyd Dederick of the VFW. “It started off at $250 and went to $500,” he said of the post’s decision to offer a sizable reward.

Pollard’s Home Front Café on Altamont’s Main Street is filled with World War II memorabilia, inside and out. Pollard has said she had her mother’s kitchen in mind when she decorated the eatery.

She led a local campaign to raise funds for the World War II Memorial in Washington and has frequently hosted veterans who have talked to schoolchildren about their experiences.

Dederick, who served in Vietnam in 1970 and ’71, said of the stolen 300-pound fiberglass statue, “It represented the World War II vets.”

The model, dressed in Army green, wore a helmet and carried a rifle. He stood next to a vintage Army tank outside the restaurant. Patrons liked to pose with him for pictures.

“He was a fierce-looking soldier,” Pollard said last week. “People first complained that he was too fierce. But he belonged there.”

—         Melissa Hale-Spencer

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