Donations sought for new veterans monument

Donations sought for  new veterans monument

Image Credit: Submitted

Greg Bair, Ward 1 Dover councilman, has his sights set on dedicating a new veterans monument on the town square during Memorial Day weekend next year. To do so, he is hoping to secure additional donations toward the project, as no city funds will be used to finance the undertaking.

Bair provided a progress update to city council during a meeting on Dec. 6. He said a total of $14,800 has been collected in the past six months toward a project goal of $25,000.

The Dover VFW has donated $13,000 to the monument, but the Dover VFW recently disbanded due to lack of membership. Pat Antonelli and Ray Ulrich attended the meeting to present the donation.

“This money was raised in the community, so we want to keep it in the community,” said Antonelli, who also said the reason for the substantial size of the donation is they want to see it done, and done right.

“We just want to see everybody recognized,” Ulrich said. “It’s something we can do to show our appreciation to everyone who served, no matter what capacity, no matter what branch.”

Bair said the total includes the monument’s design and construction, installation, landscaping, a granite bench, and a flagpole and will hopefully cover the costs of 24/7 lighting for the monument.

Dave Douglas, city service director, said they also hope to lay two sidewalks leading to the monument on the mound in the northwest quadrant of the square.

Mayor Richard Homrighausen approved the location, pledging his full support to the project.

The project was born when a Dover resident asked Bair why there was no monument to veterans in the city. “I thought it was a great idea, so I just took it by the horns,” Bair said.

Scott Harmon, Dover cemetery superintendent, presented council with a rendering he created for the monument. The center of the monument will prominently feature a large bald eagle, America’s national bird, as well as the U.S. Constitution and the American flag.

Side panels will pay tribute to all branches of the U.S. military including its newest branch, the U.S. Space Force, as well as the National League of POW/MIA Families.

An inscription on the monument will read, “Dedicated to those who answered our nation’s call in the pursuit of freedom.”

When finished, the monument will measure 5 feet tall with a base 7 feet long. It will be constructed of granite measuring 8 inches thick.

“With this being a military veterans memorial, we wanted to make sure we used domestic granite,” Harmon said.

The center and base will consist of black granite sourced from St. Peters, Pennsylvania. Side panels will be made from light gray granite quarried out of Graniteville, Vermont.

Harmon said he is working with Dover Memorials for construction and installation of the monument.

Dedication planned

Councilman Kevin Korns said they would like to dedicate the monument on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, right after the Canal Dover Festival Parade.

“This is being dedicated to all veterans, past, present and to come,” Antonelli said. “I think everyone’s going to be happy with it, and it will be a good thing for the city of Dover.”

Bair said the monument will be an asset to the city. “Not too many areas honor our present and our deceased veterans, and this will honor Dover veterans.”

Donations should be made to the Dover Exchange Club Children’s Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization. Checks should be mailed to the foundation at P.O. Box 267, Dover, OH 44622. Korns asked donors to note on their checks that the donation is for the veterans monument.