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Family Changes Controversial Halloween Display

COLLEYVILLE (CBS 11 NEWS) - Vandals destroyed a Halloween display in Colleyville that had drawn criticism for the way it mixed the holiday with the race for the White House.

Less than two days after it was destroyed though, dozens of people volunteered to rebuild it with a new message.

The display drew national attention following complaints about the life-size depiction of President Obama hanging in a large spider web. A clown also in the web represented Vice President Biden.

Homeowners Melissa and Glenn Cruson fill the Halloween display every fall with items dominating national headlines or pop culture and said it was their way of commenting on what they felt was a political circus.

Monday, Melissa started receiving calls and text messages from friends asking why she took the display down.

Colleyville Obama Hanging

"We had numerous calls, numerous texts, asking what in the world happened, why is your display down?" she said. She discovered the heads of the characters were gone, signs were shredded, and an American flag was gone. Cruson reported the crime to Colleyville Police.

The same neighbors, curious about the displays demise though, were the first to encourage the family to put it back up. Cruson said people donated money for materials and offered to help with the construction.

"It became about differing opinions and whether or not do you have the right to speak your mind," said family friend Shannon Braun.

Tuesday evening, about two dozen people gathered at the home.

Cruson quickly came up with a new display plan that she said she hoped would not cause any controversy, but still sent a message.

There were no characters in the large web. Mitt Romney was rebuilt next to an empty chair, that had clown shoes and a nose attached to it. A large sign read "Thieves took the clowns, but the circus still remains."

"We didn't want anybody to think we took it down on our own because we believe in our rights to free speech and we believe in the message we were sending to begin with," Cruson said.

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