An Air Force veteran in Wilmington, North Carolina was confused when she returned from a shopping trip to find a note on her car castigating her for parking in a “Reserved Veteran Parking” spot, WECT reports.
Mary Claire Caine — who served as a member of the flight crew for the F-117 Nighthawk in Kuwait — said that she and her two children went grocery shopping, and when they returned to the car found a note under the windshield that read: “Maybe [you] can’t read the sign you parked in front of. This space is reserved for those who fought for America … not you. Thanks, Wounded Vet.”
Caine told WCET that she believes the note was left because she’s a woman.
“I think they took one look at me when I got out of my car and saw that I was a woman and assumed I wasn’t a veteran and assumed I hadn’t served my country,” she said.
“They have this image of what today’s American veteran is — and honestly if you’ve served in the United States military, you know that veterans come in all shapes and sizes. I question whether the person who left the note was fully aware of that.”
The note confused and angered her, she said, thinking at first that it must have been “a mistake, and that I had to talk to this person and ask them why they were so quick to assume I wasn’t a veteran and that I was taking privileges that didn’t belong to me.”
“For a split second I thought, ‘Am I a worthy enough veteran to park in this spot?’ And, then I got very angry at myself for even considering that,” Caine added.
She waited in the parking lot to see if the person who wrote the note would confront her, but no one approached her.
Watch a report on the incident via WECT below.