NEW CASTLE COUNTY, Del. (FOX 29) - A homeowner association wants a veteran to remove his patriotic display from his New Castle County backyard.
“I love eagles. It’s our national symbol," homeowner Rich Killingsworth said.
Former Army MP Rich Killingsworth figures he’s got more than two dozen decorative eagles inside his home in the Parkside neighborhood of Middletown, Delaware.
“The sculpture is handmade by an artist out in California," he told FOX 29.
However, it’s the life-size bronze eagle in his backyard that has ruffled some feathers.
Killingsworth says the neighborhood architectural review committee said OK to the placement of the sculpture with the provision that he landscape around it to soften the effect. He says he agreed and even came up with a lengthy list of planned plantings.
“They approved it, unanimously. They liked what I had placed around it in terms of landscaping elements as well as the eagle," Killingsworth explained.
Then, the homeowners association stepped in, denying the backyard sculpture as “inconsistent with communitywide standards.”
The board ordered Killingsworth to remove the eagle or plant enough trees and shrubs around it so it’s “obscured entirely from view.”
His next-door neighbor, who also happens to be a veteran, has a birdseye view of the of the sculpture.
"I didn’t care if he had it or not, but now that it’s here, I think it’s his right to keep it here," nieghbor Tom Prunty said.
The dispute with the HOA now has both sides lawyered up with the board threatening daily fines.
Killingsworth says he’s not backing down.