SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — The Confederate monument at the center of an emotional debate has been removed from inside a city-owned cemetery in San Diego.
"It's a relief. I'm glad," said Amanda Bergara.
Amid the recent protests aimed at racial injustice, Bergara was one of nearly 2,800 people to sign an online petition calling on San Diego's mayor to take down a confederate monument from inside Mount Hope Cemetery.
"It's a symbol of hate and disrespect for those who fought with their lives to end slavery," said Bergara.
Buried in the cemetery are both Union and Confederate soldiers, who later lived in San Diego. The memorial, erected in 1948, names General Stonewall Jackson. In June, ABC 10News discovered the stone on the monument heavily damaged, with vandalism an ongoing issue.
Unlike other Confederate markers removed in San Diego, the plot on which the monument sits is privately owned, and the city has maintained its hands are tied. The owner, United Daughters of the Confederacy, and supporters have said such markers are monuments to history.
In the end, a city spokesperson says it was removed weeks ago at the request of the Confederate group, presumably to protect it from vandals. The monument is being stored by the city.
"Hopefully ending the hurt and pain for those who would have seen it and felt that hurt and pain. I hope it never sees the light of day," said Bergara.
Not all the hurt is gone. A flagpole remains, along with a marker that includes the name, Stonewall Jackson. Bergara says that the marker must also go.
ABC 10News reached out to the United Daughters of the Confederacy about their plans for the flagpole and future plans for the monument, and are waiting to hear back.