Peace on Earth was disrupted in Wauseon Friday night after a Defiance driver blew a stop sign and plowed through a display under a traditional Christmas star hanging at South Park.
Assistant Police Chief John Roof reported that a 2005 Ford pickup driven by Joshua Jehanyar, 24, was southbound on Fulton Street at approximately 10:44 p.m. when he drove through a stop sign at the intersection of Fulton Street and Leggett Street and through a sign proclaiming “Peace On Earth – Goodwill Toward Men” beneath the city’s annual holiday star decoration at the edge of South Park. The truck continued into the park and flipped on its side.
Jenhanyar was transported with minor injuries to the Fulton County Health Center. A hospital spokesperson said Monday no one by that name has been admitted.
“We suspect that alcohol was a factor,” Roof said.
Jenhanyar was charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated, reckless operation, failure to obey a stop sign, and failure to control.
The “Peace” sign, a “Merry Christmas” sign just below the star, and an accompanying candle decoration were damaged. However, the large, lighted star reportedly still shines brightly.
“There are no ifs, ands or buts, we will repair or replace it,” said Public Service Director Keith Torbet said of the damaged display. He said Public Works employees were examining the the extent of the damage on Monday. Torbet said he is looking for a company or individual that can make the repairs.
“It’s not going to be perfect but we’re going to try to get it as good as we can for the rest of the season,” he said.
The iconic Christmas decoration has been placed at South Park every Christmas for decades.
Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-335-2010.