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Longtime Keizer resident Dave Bauer called us recently wondering what had happened to the “Pride, Spirit and Volunteerism” motto that appeared at Newton-McGee Plaza – that’s the fountain at the southwest corner of River and Chemawa roads. [MAP: 2] It was named in honor of former city councilor Jerry McGee and the late former Mayor Bob Newton.

It was vandalized several months ago, and whoever did it left a few letters spelling out a somewhat dirty, if juvenile, message. Use your imagination.

City officials say they still have some of the letters, but the money to replace the missing ones isn’t budgeted. There’s no estimate yet on replacing them, according to Kevin Watson, assistant to the city manager.

“We were just planning on waiting until the new budget,” Watson said.

And City Manager Chris Eppley said there’s no plans to abandon the city’s motto anytime soon.

“We are not steering away from the motto; we simply have chosen not to take on the expense of putting that back on the (focal point),” Eppley said.

“We firmly believe in the motto of pride, spirit and volunteerism and will be returning that to the monument when … in the hopes that future pride, spirit and volunteerism prevent vandalism after we do so.”

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