WWBT, December 13, 2022
Crews hit the vault that held the remains of A.P. Hill on Tuesday morning, but the day was overshadowed by intense arguing among onlookers.
Many of those standing and watching were wearing jackets with Confederate flags, which upset many in attendance celebrating the statue’s removal.
“I just asked him a simple question. I asked him, ‘What does that flag represent to you?’ because to my people, it represents a lot of hate and brutality, and pain,” Devin Curtis, one of the men engaging in argument, said.
As Curtis continued asking questions and demanding answers, many people became upset and believed he was disrespectful toward the process.
At one point, the closest collateral descendant of A.P. Hill, John Hill, climbed out of the gravesite. He yelled in anger at those disturbing the process.
John Hill, descendant of AP Hill, is retrieving the remains. Now he is engaging with onlookers who have been arguing behind the caution tape. People on both sides of the controversy yelling at one another. @NBC12 pic.twitter.com/cXAzbTy26u
— Riley Wyant (@rileywyantTV) December 13, 2022
NBC12 spoke to John Hill Monday, who said it was an emotional and devastating process for his family. On Tuesday, following the heated exchange, he tweeted, “I was exhuming my ancestor’s remains. And they wouldn’t stop screaming the entire time. It was a very personal moment removing his remains, and they were completely out of hand.”
Police remained on the scene and were forced to separate some people. Some officers even showed up in full military gear with rifles.