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The Veterans’ Memorial Groundbreaking in Garden Valley is Underway

The Veteran ‘s Memorial groundwork at Weilmunster Park has begun. There will be much more progress in constructing the memorial site as the next few weeks go by. The memorial will be the only one set as a dedicated memorial in Boise County and following protocol to reach that specific designation. This memorial site will preserve the legacy of American military Veterans and have a place of honor.

It all started with the Garden Valley Parks and Recreation District board wanting to add a lighted flag at Weilmunster Park.  Then Chris Gill, President of the Syringa Club, looked into going further and having a memorial site to honor the Veterans of the area and the county.  The Syringa Club members agreed with the plan.  The idea was brought before the Parks and Rec Board for approval.

Now the site is being prepped for concrete and pedestals. “The surface concrete has been donated, the hand mix concrete provided at a discount to us,” stated Gill.  Re-bar will be laid and the surface concrete will be poured in the next week or so. Much of site prep labor is being donated along with some of the materials.

There will be five pedestals with a medallion that will honor each branch of the military. The base of the flag pole is set and the holes for the pedestals will be set. The pedestals will be finished with rock that will match the work just completed on the bases of the pavilion supports.  The military insignia plaques are ordered and due to be here by October 2nd. Donations are coming in to help with the costs of the medallions. At the time of this writing at least three branches, Army, Navy and Air Force, have been purchased through outright donations specifically aimed to cover those medallions.

Idaho City Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) will be obtaining the American and POW flags since flying both flags are part of the protocol for a Veterans’ Memorial. They will also be looking at a possible grant to help with plans. The VFW Post 142 in Idaho City has helped the Syringa Club apply for a grant from the national level of VFW. The VFW will also provide the color guard for the dedication ceremony.

A planned dedication event will be planned on Veterans’ Day which is Saturday, November 11th . The site will be ready for the dedication and there will be other activities on the agenda to commemorate and honor Veterans.  This event will be open to all Boise County residents.  Closer to November there will be information of time for the event.

A fundraiser will begin after the event to sell engraved bricks which will become a backdrop dedication wall. “The bricks will most likely be around $50 per brick including the engraving,” according to Gill. Buy a Brick to help create a wall on which you can honor your veteran, currently serving, retired, or passed on with their name, branch, service dates or campaign.  Profit from the bricks will be used to defray costs to establish the site and any extra ongoing maintenance.

So as the site is prepped and medallions on order, the goal to be ready by November 11th is on target.  Donations will help with other purchases such as the flags and other unexpected costs that come with site prep sometimes. This will complete phase one.

Phase two will be kicked off with the dedication ceremony. An order form will be available to buy the bricks for engraving after the official dedication ceremony. There will also be a mailing to all residents of the county who would like to dedicate a brick.  Once the order deadline and number of bricks is met, the bricks take 6 to 8 weeks to be delivered, at which point, they will be laid in the wall. Ordering further bricks will be done in batches of mostly likely twenty at a time.

The Syringa Club has a Veterans’ Memorial donation fund set up at Mountain America Credit Union. Gill says, “Watch for information posted around town. Phase 2-“Buy a Brick” will follow as soon as the Veteran’s Memorial is complete. With any luck we can kick it off with the dedication this fall and begin laying the wall in the spring!”

Gill has plans to be in contact with all news and media outlets to insure that information about the dedication bricks will be circulating around. If you would like further information please call Gene or Chris Gill at 208-462-4629

Note: The site is clearly marked as a construction area and must be respected as such.

Written by Janet Juroch