Story behind Korean War Memorial is one of vision
Originally published on Nov. 12
The making of the Manatee County Korean War Memorial, to be dedicated Nov. 22 at Veterans Park in downtown Bradenton, is a story of vision, perseverance and passion.
The local Korean War Veterans Association, Chapter 199, led by Skip Hannon, the chapter's chairman, paid a price worth paying for something that will be permanent, that is here for the present and the future.
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Hannon and his team of volunteers captured the essence of the Korean War as visualized in that stark, black polished granite memorial.
It will be applauded by the area's major veterans' organizations, and in particular by those of us who knew the war first hand; and, above all, will constitute an uplifting experience for all ages now and in the future.
The Korea War Veterans Memorial, in its stark simplicity, is a tribute to simpler times.
It was the last true foot soldier's war; it was during this conflict that our branches of service became fully racially integrated; it was our nation's first action to thwart the spread of communism; it was the world's first conflict to be undertaken under the banner of the United Nations.
But most importantly, as Hannon reminded us all, when our sons and daughters were asked to go to a country they did not know to defend a people they had never met, they did so without question.
Pause on Nov. 22 and attend the dedication ceremony for those who served and died, men and women who sacrificed in, succumbed to, or survived the war that was neither declared nor remembered.
And now, appropriately, the Korean War Memorial joins the Vietnam Memorial on hallowed ground at Veterans Memorial Park.
George Staudt, American Legion Kirby Stewart Post 24, Korea War veteran Bradenton