Local News

Army Wife's Anti-War Signs Draw Fire

Posted January 19, 2007 5:13 p.m. EST
Updated January 19, 2007 8:15 p.m. EST

— An Army wife who is calling for U.S. troops to be brought back from Iraq is engaged in a war on the home front.

Catherine McLin painted an anti-war sign and posted it in her front yard last week after President Bush announced plans to send another 20,000 military personnel to the Middle East. Her husband, Capt. James McLin, is scheduled to deploy with other members of the 82nd Airborne Division in June.

"He comes home daily traumatized over stories he hears — people coming home from the war, how it's tearing families apart," Catherine McLin said. "We've been over there for years. It's time to come home."

Anti-war signs in the middle of a military town quickly gain notoriety, and within hours, the first sign was destroyed.

"We had it staked in the ground with American flags, and they took it out and tore it apart and threw it all over the yard," she said.

McLin escalated her own war, however, and fought back with more replacement signs. The "No War" signs are hand-drawn or spray-painted in red.

"It does hurt," neighbor Cris Pecko said. "You're a military person and sending someone over there, and you want to know everyone supports you back home."

Although neighbors have mixed feelings about the prominent display, McLin's husband said he stands behind her.

"She's facing a lot of opposition. I'm proud of her sticking to her guns," said James McLin, an Army social worker.

Some passers-by honk, while others shout and curse. Because of the controversy, the McLins have asked police to cruise by their house more often.

They said they believe they're supporting soldiers by trying to bring them home sooner, and they urged other families to speak out. Catherine McLin said the signs will stay up until all U.S. troops come home.