Metro

Women out after Arlington Cemetery photo

Image created furor on Facebook

Two women who worked for a Cape Cod nonprofit are no longer with the company after posting a picture online that showed one of them making an obscene gesture at Arlington National Cemetery, according to the organization.

Lindsey Stone of Plymouth and a co-worker at Living Independently Forever Inc. were placed on unpaid leave Tuesday when the photo surfaced on Facebook. The nonprofit provides independent living situations for adults with disabilities.

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“We wish to announce that the two employees recently involved in the Arlington Cemetery incident are no longer employees,” the organization posted on its Facebook page. “Again, we deeply regret any disrespect to members of the military and their families. The incident and publicity has been very upsetting to the learning disabled population we serve.

“To protect our residents, any comments, however well-intentioned, will be deleted. We appreciate your concern and understanding as we focus on the care of our community.”

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It was not immediately clear late Wednesday if the women had resigned, or were let go.

Stone was photographed by the co-worker yelling and raising her middle finger at a sign outside the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The sign reads “Silence and Respect.”

The image had stirred up heavy criticism and prompted a Facebook page demanding the two be fired.

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The women reportedly issued an apology on Tuesday.

The photo was taken when the two were among dozens of residents and staff members on a trip to Washington in October, according to the nonprofit.

“This photograph in no way reflects the opinions or values of the LIFE organization, which holds our nation’s veterans in the highest regard,” Diane Enochs, executive director of the nonprofit, said in a statement. “We are acutely aware that this photo has done a grave disservice to veterans and we are deeply saddened that it was taken and shared in a public medium.”

Stone could not be reached for comment Wednesday night.

Derek J. Anderson can be reached at derek.anderson@globe.com. Globe correspondent Sarah N. Mattero contributed to this report.
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