Police & Fire

Westfield Student Believes School Rivalry Motivated Theft, Vandalism in Fanwood

91003247c851f123d7cd_5151487f62c93859d832_WHS_by_Jill.jpg
A Fanwood resident and recent grad of Westfield High School believes school rivalry motivated the theft of her sign and vandalism of her car. Credits: Jill D'Ambrosio
91003247c851f123d7cd_5151487f62c93859d832_WHS_by_Jill.jpg

FANWOOD, NJ — A Westfield High School student whose mother recently moved to Fanwood said her graduation sign was stolen from their yard and her car was vandalized.

Kate Helander said she found feces smeared across her car last Thursday. Then on Tuesday, she said, her 2016 Westfield High School graduation lawn sign was stolen from her front yard.

The family has not filed a report with the police or pressed charges. No perpetrators have stepped forward, and Helander’s sign has not been returned, she said.

Sign Up for E-News

“I was nervous when my mom moved to Fanwood because of the rivalry,” said Helander, who attended WHS for all four of her high school years. “I actually hesitated originally about putting my graduation up. I was worried someone would do something to the sign, but I was excited about graduating so I put it up anyway.”

Helander believed the motive of the incident most likely stemmed from the Westfield High School/Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School athletic rivalry.

“I really think that the rivalry should stick to sports and not target individuals,” Helander said. “The rivalry has been fun at sporting events as long as it was in good taste and not extreme. It has been malicious in the past, which takes away from the fun of it.”

Helander had some words for the people who took her lawn sign and vandalized her car:

“I would ask them to think about their actions beforehand.To them I'm sure that this was just a meaningless prank, but it's been hard enough having to explain my living situation to my peers without experiencing backlash like this,” she said. “I would encourage them to look beyond the rivalry and put themselves in my shoes. I'm sure that if they are Scotch Plains kids that they wouldn't feel completely comfortable having to live in Westfield.”

Helander said she does not have any ill will toward SP-F.

“I have some awesome friends from Scotch Plains and Fanwood, and know that this isn't something that the vast majority of the SPF kids would do,” Helander said. “It was a really unfortunate incident, but I'm not letting it taint my view on the town or the kids that live there.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Westfield Family Continues ‘Summer of Kindness’ with Infant Clothing Drive

July 12, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield mom and teacher Sara Liptack is continuing her family’s “Summer of Kindess” with an infant clothing for Furniture Assist, an organization in Springfield that helps formerly homeless people, veterans, the elderly, fire victims, refugees and people fleeing domestic violence.

“I said, ‘What’s the one thing you really ...

It's Not What You Are Eating, It's What's Eating You

EMOTIONAL EATING: FEEDING YOUR FEELINGS

Emotional eating can be described as episodes of binge-eating, grazing and/or eating when not hungry to soothe feelings. Emotional eaters have a pattern of eating to cope with stress, emotional conflicts and problems of daily life.

Emotional eating is eating for reasons other than hunger. Instead of physical symptoms initiating the eating, ...

Send a Message to Nick Scutari and His Cronies: Corruption Has No Place in Union County

July 19, 2018

Dear Editor:

The Union County Freeholders’ decision to appoint State Senator and newly-elected Union County Democratic Chairman, Nick Scutari’s chief of staff, Ed Oatman as County Manager smelled of corruption from the start.

To place a political consultant like Oatman in the role of overseeing 2,800 employees and running the day-to-day operations of the $500 million County ...

When to Dial 911: Scotch Plains Rescue Squad Tip of the Month

July 10, 2018

There are many times you should call 911. If you or someone around you is in true medical distress, such as experiencing difficulty breathing, chest pains, bleeding, possible stroke, or any other serious health issues, then 911 should be called as soon as possible. If there are wires down, fire, a crime in progress, or other dangerous conditions to people or property, call 911 ...

Pizza and Trivia at Scotch Plains Public Library on Weds, Aug. 8

July 21, 2018

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- ​On Wednesday, August 8 at 6:00 p.m., join the teen staff for a night of trivia and pizza!

Teams of four will compete to figure out who has the best musical knowledge. Questions will range from “Name that Tune” to “Who Wrote that Musical?” The winning team will receive prizes. Registration is required and will begin on Monday, July 30 at 11:00 ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_b3322a9af399ab00349f_nightsky

Mon, July 23, 8:00 PM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

View the Night Sky at the Scotch Plains Public ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Carousel_image_99864111416f9af936dd_dsc_2436

Wed, July 25, 6:00 PM

JCC of Central NJ, Scotch Plains

The JCC’s Barracudas Swim Team Meet the Coaches ...

Sports

Carousel_image_989b40b66144f89908a8_pizza_run

Wed, July 25, 7:00 PM

Westfield

Downtown Westfield 5K & Pizza Extravaganza

Sports