By Ted Land (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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9:51 PM EDT, October 5, 2012
SOUTH BEND - A replica human body wearing a skeleton mask and hanging by its neck from a tree in someone’s yard, meant to be a Halloween decoration, has really upset some people.
“We couldn't believe it,” said Val Maxwell, who spotted it near State Road 23 and Mayflower Rd on South Bend's southwest side, Friday.
Maxwell, who is black, got out of the car, took a closer look, and gasped.
“That looks like a human being, a black human being, a man that had just been lynched and was just hanging there swaying in the wind, its body,” he said.
It's not what you think, says Kevin McCall. He's the guy who put it there in his yard.
“(It’s) just basically a typical Halloween decoration,” he said, Friday.
McCall says he's not trying to offend any minorities or conjure up images from history of black Americans being lynched.
“If there were no mask on it or anything on it, and it was just a plain black face, maybe, but definitely not anything like that going on here,” he said.
“It was just very painful, emotionally, to see that,” said Maxwell.
McCall says this is the first year he's tried doing any kind of big Halloween display, and thought the hanging body would really scare some people.
It already has.
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