By Susan Gager
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
5:29 PM CDT, April 30, 2012
Vandals leave behind a mess in a Hutchinson church and all members can hope is the culprit comes forward. It's the third Hutchinson church hit by vandals in a month.
Mead retraces his first steps into the Eastwood Church of Christ Sunday morning.
“I saw what looked like a bunch of ash or some kind of substance on the floor that started here where the lady's bathroom is,” said Minister Jimie-Wray Mead of the Eastwood Church of Christ.
At first he thought the "ash" was from an air conditioner blowing up, but footprints in the ash made him realize otherwise.
“I knew the last person left at 10:00 and I knew I was the first person in the building so I knew that was a bad sign to see all this substance and ash,” said Mead.
When he entered the church auditorium his suspicions were confirmed.
"I could not believe it. Everything was saturated with this substance,” said Mead.
As it turns out that substance was from a fire extinguisher.
“They went into all the classrooms, we have 10 classrooms, and blew out all the material out of these fire extinguishers,” said Mead.
Whoever is responsible tried to break in through several window screens, before finding a window where they could break through the glass.
The minister made the discovery in time to cancel Sunday service, but he says people still came.
“I hadn't called anyone and members were coming in with vacuum cleaners, with clothes...,” said Mead.
He says by 2:30 that afternoon, up to 100 volunteers had cleaned the entire building. He was amazed by the collaboration, but upset over the act.
“I’m very sad anybody could get any kind of joy out of destroying any kind of building, much less the Lord's house,” said Mead.
Police haven't made any arrests in the recent rash of church vandalism in the last month.
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