Archive for Friday, November 5, 1999

OTTAWA HONORS FALLEN SOLDIERS

November 5, 1999

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— A memorial in downtown Ottawa honoring Franklin County residents who died at war will be dedicated on Veterans Day, which is next Thursday.

After five years of telephone calls, paperwork and sweat, a Veterans Memorial will be dedicated in Ottawa next week, just in time for Veterans Day.

"I'm really excited," said Sherry Wright, a board member of the Franklin County Veterans Memorial, who has been working since 1994 on the project.

"We've put in a lot of long, hard years with a lot of work on it," she said.

The memorial is on the grounds of the Franklin County Courthouse, near Fourth and Main streets.

The circular monument includes five granite panels identifying Franklin County soldiers who died in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Also listed are veterans who are missing in action.

The dedication ceremony will be at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, which is Veterans Day.

Names of the 210 listed on the memorial will be read, and balloons will be released as each name is read, Wright said.

Marshall Ball Sr., who has four family members listed on the memorial, will release the balloons.

He lost two brothers in World War II, a brother in the Korean War and a nephew in Vietnam, Wright said.

Music also will be played during the dedication, she said.

Cost for the memorial was $120,000, which organizers raised during the past five years through a variety of efforts.

The memorial was designed by James Sullivan, an Overland Park architect who volunteered his services, Wright said.

In addition to the memorial's dedication, a Veterans Day parade will be at 1:30 p.m. Nov. 13 in downtown Ottawa.

There are more than 100 entries in the parade, Wright said. The parade will begin at Tecumseh and Main streets and travel south on Main to Park Street, she said.

-- Michael Dekker's phone message number is 832-7187. His e-mail address is mdekker@ljworld.com.

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