Neighbors Show Support After Vandals Target Christmas Display

A real life Grinch tried to ruin a well-known Christmas display in East Dallas.

Gary Isett's front yard on the corner of Abrams Road and Trammel Drive draws onlookers every year. His yard is full of twinkling lights, inflatables, a Christmas tree and the word "JOY" lit up for passersby along Abrams.

But Sunday, Isett woke up to garbage in his yard and several deflated inflatables with holes sliced into them.

"I just woke up the other morning and I noticed a couple of things were down and Snoopy was gone," Isett said. "I take my time to do this so you just destroy it for no reason."

Isett spend part of Christmas Eve patching up the damaged items.

Randy Patterson stopped by to see the lights with his nephew Monday night.

"It's about being happy and joyful," Patterson said. "Why would people tear up something that gives kids and adults so much joy?"

Isett's yard art is well-known in northeast Dallas. The eclectic collection began with a 7-foot-tall Kip's Big Boy statue, then grew to add a vintage Dairy Queen sign and a 100-pound, weatherproof T-Rex with glowing red eyes.

For the last seven years at Thanksgiving, Isett sets out a bright Christmas display. He said it's not unusual to find people in his yard, enjoying the lights.

"I've had wedding photos, Christmas cards -- a lot of Christmas cards," Isett said.

So when Isett posted about the vandalism on Facebook Sunday evening, his neighbors began to flood the post with messages of support.

Some have even delivered notes and cards with cash to Isett's front door.

"Dear neighbor, I drive by your house every day and I truly enjoy the lawn," said one. "Here's some money to go towards repair and replacement."

Isett pulled two crisp $100 bills from the card.

Isett published another Facebook  post, telling people he appreciated the support but doesn't need any money.

"I wish they wouldn't have, but hey, bigger and brighter next year," Isett said.

Bigger, brighter and secured with cameras. Isett said he planned to invest in a new security system, adding cameras to the display next year.

And, there will be a next year.

Isett said the petty crime won't stop an East Dallas Christmas tradition.

"I'll always do this."

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