THE Tamworth RSL has been "insulted" by another targeted attack on one of the city's Anzac memorials.
It is the third time monuments have been defaced in Anzac Park in East Tamworth in the last two years and it comes on the eve of a significant Sandakan service to be held this Saturday.
Sub-branch president Jayne McCarthy said it was an insulting act but the door was always open for any individual who had grievances with the armed forces or the RSL.
"They're people and we just need to understand each other," she said.
"We can do a lot of things, but we can't help what we don't know."
Ms McCarthy wouldn't comment on whether the three incidents were linked or if the RSL suspected anyone in particular.
"We're just going to let the police do their job," she said.
"We're going to get on with our job, honouring service-people, not dishonoring them."
Ms McCarthy conceded the sub-branch might have to call on the council to install CCTV at the park given the recurring nature of the attacks.
Mark Rodda called on the council to install surveillance at the city's memorial sites two years ago, but his push came to naught.
"Do we have to go to that extreme to keep this from happening," Ms McCarthy said.
"War memorials are so sacrosanct in Australia, it would be disappointing for it to have to get that far."
As the world wars move further out of living memory, Ms McCarthy said it was important for people continue their remembrance of past conflicts.
"I don't know if this is taught in schools anymore," she said.
"Where would be without our contribution to the great wars."
The most recent vandal attack on the Anzac memorial gates targeted one particular name on the WWI honour roll: R. Flemming.
The name was also defaced in a similar incident in 2018.
The park's bronze Sandakan memorial remains sullied after it was filed and hacked in late-2018.
It is one of only 11 Sandakan monuments in the country acknowledging one of the greatest atrocities of WWII where more than 2000 allied soldiers were killed, including a number of Tamworth people.
Police were made aware of the latest act of vandalism at the Tamworth park on Wednesday.
An investigation is under way with officers urging any witnesses or anyone with vision of the incident to come forward.
"Tamworth detectives are currently investigating the matter and are investigating any potential links to previous vandalism incidents in the same location," Oxley Detectives Acting Inspector Jason Darcy said.
"Police are appealing for witnesses and CCTV of the area is being canvassed, but we would appeal for any further information from the community.
"In the meantime, further patrols will be made in that area as investigations continue."
Tamworth Regional Council secured a $10,000 grant to repair the initial damage to fix the honour rolls. A stonemason, contracted from Sydney's Rookwood Cemetery, repaired the damage in April.
Who was Private Reginald Fleming?
The name nearly wiped off the honour roll in the attack is that off Private Reginald Fleming.
Private Fleming, born in Tamworth in 1890, was a machine gunner in the 42nd Infantry Battalion
He was working as a labourer in Toowoomba before he enlisted in September 1916. He arrived in France less than a year later, and fought in the trenches of Belgium for three months.
In March 1918, Pvt Fleming was part of the 42nd Battalion's charge south in to France, and he fought in the area around the railway junction Amiems.
At the end of May, Pvt Fleming received a shell wound and mustard gas poisoning, and was admitted to hospital for treatment.
He returned to the lines in July 1918 , just in time to take part in a major offensive near Hamel. It was there that he was killed in action on August 25, 1918.
There is no mention in his army file about his burial, no known grave is recorded and it would seem that Reginald's body was never recovered.
His name is listed on the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial in France.
Information courtesy of the Tamworth RSL sub-branch and Sandra Lambkin.