A Houston attorney is going to battle with his homeowner’s association after purchasing a fully restored World War II M4 Sherman tank and parking it in his upscale River Oaks, Texas neighborhood.
“Took a year to get here but now it's on River Oaks Boulevard,” owner Tony Buzbee told KHOU news site. “This particular tank landed at Normandy. It liberated Paris and ultimately went all the way to Berlin. There's a lot of history here.”
Not everyone wants a piece of history rolling through the swanky neighborhood, however. River Oaks Property Owners, the local homeowner's association, is going after Buzbee, sending him letters suggesting the tank causes traffic problems and poses a safety issue. The HOA also claims the roughly 33-ton tank is creating “serious concerns for neighbors.”
“It's not violating any ordinance, but for some people it makes the homeowner’s association uncomfortable,” Buzbee said.
While the tank is fully functional, it has been demilitarized, meaning its weapons are no longer operational, according to Popular Mechanics.
Buzbee purchased the tank on auction from a French museum that was closing down last year, according to The American Lawyer. It is believed to be the second tank of first platoon, Charlie Company under the 66th Armored Regiment, 2nd Armored Division, based on its markings, Popular Mechanics reported.
But Buzbee doesn’t plan to give in to the HOA’s demands.
“The problem is there is no action they can take,” Buzbee told KHOU. “They can ticket it or they can try to tow it, but the truth is unless I decide to move it, it's not going anywhere.”
Buzbee lives in a swanky neighborhood, consisting of mostly multi-million dollar homes. He himself is particularly noteworthy for his work as the attorney for Texas Gov. Rick Perry in his 2016 felony case for abuse of power and against British Petroleum for exposing 10 people to toxic emissions in 2009.
KHOU tried to reach out to neighbors who wanted to see the tank removed from the street, but reportedly found none.
“It's great for America,” Buzbee’s neighbor Ken Douglas told KHOU.
Still, the tank isn’t going to reside outside Buzbee’s home on River Oaks Boulevard permanently. He plans to move the iconic World War II combat vehicle to his another property in a few weeks. Until then, Buzbee isn’t concerned about the homeowner’s association’s war on his tank.