Veterans POW MIA Statue distracts from War Memorial

Area veterans, their families and local businesses came together to generously donate funds to help make the  Veteran’s Memorial Wall a reality in Fallon County.

By Drury G. Phebus

In the large Steve McClain Park, a number of areas were available to set the POW-MIA statue. Yet it has been set directly on the pathway leading to the War Memorial, distracting from the beauty of the monument.

Area veterans, their families and local businesses came together to generously donate funds to help make the  Veteran’s Memorial Wall a reality in Fallon County.

It was a proud moment for Legion Post #35 and for many local veterans when the wall was completed in 2012.  The stately granite wall is awe inspiring as it presents the names of  1600  area veterans that are inscribed on both sides of the monument. The oldest soldiers named served in the civil war.

Shortly after the wall was erected, families of Fallon County Vets sent in letters from across the nation and the wall was displayed on Facebook pages across the county. Many vets and their families expressed what it meant to them to have their family member acknowledged for his/her service and what an honor to have their military service immortalized for all time in their hometown. This memorial represents area men and woman who served their country proud, many of them having made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country free.

It saddens a number of local vets to read in the Fallon County Commissioner notes of March 6, in the March 31st addition of the Fallon County Times, that when the commission was informed about how disappointing it is to have had them purchase and then place a POW MIA statue in the pathway directly in front of the Veteran’s Memorial Wall, that they voted not to move it. They cited that there is potential for it to crack or damage their statue.

It is a little baffling that the Commissioners agreed to have the SMART office take it upon themselves to purchase a POW MIA statue to begin with because Fallon County has never had a POW MIA solider. Now to learn that the statue was purchased from the Veteran’s War Memorial Wall funds that were to be used to make future inscriptions on the War Memorial. The POW MIA statue was actually purchased and set without notifying Post #35 to get their input whether Fallon County ever had a POW MIA, much else ask about setting it on the pathway to the War Veteran’s Memorial.

The War Veteran’s Memorial is a destination point in Baker, where veteran’s families can honor their veteran relatives. The space in front of the memorial that was to be used for families to sit and view the wall and also to be used for public Americanism gatherings is now a cluttered mess. Call the Commissioners and tell them so. See the photo above. Fallon Post #35 will raise the money to move it, if money is a concern.

The decision to purchase the statue is ‘water under the bridge’, but the decision to not move it from being a distraction is a wrong decision.

      



GAMES