|The Veterans Memorial that once stood in front of the|
Sturbridge Town Hall.
No more monument to the veterans of Sturbridge outside of the Town Hall. The stone work was discarded, the plaques removed and attached to the walls on the second floor of the Town Hall. The front lawn of the Town Hall was cleared of everything except the flag pole.
There is nothing left, and the reader wanted to know why, and what could be done to return the memorial. This was was the first I had heard of the monument not returning to its original site, and I passed along the readers email to our Veterans Agent, Tom Chamberland in hopes of getting an answer. Tom was quick with a reply, but was in the dark as much as the reader and I were.
In the meantime, there seemed to be a local ground swell of anger, and disappointment that the monument was gone for good, and a petition was circulating in town wanting the Veterans Memorial restored. The petition will be circulated along the parade route on Memorial Day for people to sign to support the restoration of the Veterans Memorial.
Ironic is not a strong enough word to describe that last sentence.
We have all seen plaques that were once dedicated with pride relegated to some back wall when construction forced their being moved. Bronze honoring those that served in the Spanish American War hanging in a dark third floor hallway, or a plaque honoring those that served in Indochina being sentenced to the wall of the break room. It happens as a temporary fix, but is seldom if ever really fixed.
Whose idea was to not restore the monument? Who decided that hanging the plaques on the second floor was memorial enough for those whose names are on those plaques? Above all, when did it become the culture of the Town of Sturbridge to make decisions,and perform actions without the input of the citizenry?
Sidewalks, slate roofs, single pane windows, snow removal along our sidewalks all decided on, and on and on all decided upon at meetings, not by votes of the residents. Now, the destruction of the Town of Sturbridge's Veterans Memorial, the hanging of the once proud plates of bronze on the wall in a second floor assembly room, and no one seems to know how, or why it happened.
I want to refer you to Selectman Tom Creamers blog for additional information Tom has posted about this matter. Please take a moment to read it.
What is happening here? Something as sacred as the monuments to those that served our country in time of conflict being torn down without a plan to rebuild them?
It is not only a shame, but it is a disgrace if the Memorial is not restored.
Now, with all of the above in mind, I want to ask you to view the video below. It is about the War Memorials that were recently constructed in the Town of Auburn along Route 12 in 2010. The difference between one towns honoring of its veterans, and the way those in the brick building at the corner of Main and Maple have chosen to, is a galaxy apart. I sincerely hope there are those among us with the gumption, and resolve to once again do our veterans proud.
I also hope that in the coming days some answers will be obtained, and offered to the town, if not, then it is far past the time to reclaim our town from those that have such little respect for its citizenry, not to mention its veterans.
At the end of Tom Creamers post on his blog he wrote,
Tom, this was the "other issue" I alluded to in my previous post.
Please take a minute check out the video below, and when it has finished think about what you have just read.