After Santa Marian Kamalen, another beloved Merizo landmark was vandalized this month but the village residents are determined to rebuild the landmark and not let the vandalism get them down.
The “Heart of Malesso” was vandalized Christmas evening. It has been one of the most popular spots on island, especially for those taking Instagram photos.
Steven Cruz, Merizo resident, said: “After the holiday season, We plan to strengthen the heart and will keep it up for as long as possible.”
He added that the villagers will be praying for the culprit.
The wooden display was designed and inspired by a resident of Merizo, Abby Cruz.
It was originally put up for Valentine’s Day of this year, but due to popular demand, they kept it up for families and tourists to visit.
It is located by the bell tower across the street from the village’s Catholic church.
SMC Merizo says in a Facebook post, “The family of Steve and Abby Cruz, Team SMC, are devastated by this cowardly and insensitive act of violence. This incident will not deter Steve’s and Abby’s resilience to quickly rebuild the heart of Malesso, which in fact has become an icon of the village. This display brought many people together near and far and for our island community to visit including military-based families and tourists. It’s something dear to our hearts.”
Cruz said that on Saturday Morning, December 26th, he went to unplug the lights of the Coconut Christmas tree, then discovered the damages at the “heart” display and a hammer not too far from the heart.
He believes the vandalism was intentional. The Guam Police Department was informed.
If you would like to assist in rebuilding the Heart of Malesso, you can contact the family at 671-998-0660.
And for more details, you can also check out their Facebook and Instagram @SMC MERIZO