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Veterans attacked outside Akron American Legion Post

Police searching for men who punched, kicked vets
Posted at 5:11 PM, Nov 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-02 19:25:30-04

AKRON, Ohio — On the week before Veterans Day, there is outrage in Akron after three men, including two veterans, were brutally attacked outside of American Legion Post 449 on Kenmore Boulevard.

One of the victims, a 61-year-old man named Ralph, is sharing the harrowing story in the hopes that the assailants will be captured. News 5 is not reporting Ralph's last name at the request of his family.

"I served a reason, a good purpose. Them clowns, all they're doing is serving themselves," Ralph said. "If they want to fight for something, they got to find something to fight for other than their pitiful little self."

Ralph was inside the post watching the Ohio State Football game on Saturday night when he glanced up and noticed something disturbing on a surveillance monitor.

A member, who had stepped out a back door to have a cigarette, was being pushed and punched by two men. The men had pulled up to the member in an alleyway, got out of a white car, and began an attack that appeared to be unprovoked.

Ralph and another veteran raced out the door to help.

"We just went out to stop it, not provoking nothing. That ain't our mission here at the Legion," he said.

However, the beating intensified and both of the vets were also injured. By then, a third person who was inside the car may have been involved, police said.

"I fell against the building and that's when I got hit," Ralph said.

Surveillance video captured Ralph being knocked to the ground and repeatedly punched and kicked.

The member who was originally targeted was also violently pushed down and appeared to be dazed. Other people inside the post 911.

"They got beat up. The one guy's eye is bleeding and it's all swollen," an employee told the operator.

Ralph is now nursing a bruised and bloodied left eye which was swollen for two days.

He said the other veteran suffered a more serious eye injury and may need surgery. The member suffered a head injury, described as "a goose egg", but he is expected to be okay.

After the beatings, the attackers got back into the car and drove off down the alley. Police believe they've identified two of the suspects and charges are likely.

"We condemn any acts of violence especially those inflicted upon our veterans and other service members," said Lt. Michael Miller.

As the country prepares to honor the men and women who serve or have served, Ralph hopes the men who attacked him and two others eventually serve time behind bars.

"It ain't my judgment call, but I didn't make their decisions for them. They did. Now it's time to live with their decisions."