Lorain County commissioners make wise investment in memorials for veterans

It’s the right move by the Lorraine County Commissioner to provide $130,000 in funding to help create three memorials honoring Lorraine County veterans.

Commissioners voted 2-0 on December 21 to approve funding from the Lorain County Honor Fund, which was created this fall.

Commissioners Matt Lundy and Michelle Hung endorsed funding. Commissioner Dave Moore was unable to attend the meeting due to illness.

When completed, these memorials will recognize and honor the men and women who gave their lives to serve and protect the freedom we all have.

Yes, Lorain County has many memorials honoring the sacrifices the military made to secure our freedom.

The last one of the soldiers deserves recognition and these memorials are designed as such.

The Commissioner has approved $30,000 to help restore the memorial in Lorain’s Pulaski Park. $50,000 for the future Ohio Hispanic Memorial in Lorraine’s Oakwood Park. He will pay $50,000 for the portion of the Northridgeville Veterans Memorial that has yet to be built in Northridgeville.

All three projects received matching funds from their respective cities.

Pulaski Park is located at 418 West 15th Street, on a triangular wedge of land between West 15th Street and West 17th Street near the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish.

Built by the Polish Social Federation in 1938, the park honors Brigadier General Casimir Pulaski, a Polish-American Revolutionary War hero who fought at Brandywine, Germantown, Valley Forge and Charleston before being killed at the Siege of Savannah. Named after. 31 years old.

And the City of Lorraine is matching the $30,000 the Commissioner contributes to the project.

Steve Vansek, co-chair of the organization that helps park rehabilitation, told the commissioner that his group had raised $11,000 for the project.

Work on the park will begin in spring 2023 with tree felling.

The plan also calls for replacement of sidewalks adjacent to the park and other necessary improvements.

The sidewalk replacement work alone is expected to cost up to $43,000.

Plans call for a crew to build the North Ridgeville Memorial in South Central Park.

Mark Steinbrunner, one of the driving forces behind the memorial, told the commissioner that he began investigating ideas for a veterans memorial for the city in 2019.

The monument is protected by a mound that gives it a secluded look.

It also includes a fountain inscribed with the names of Northridgeville veterans who died in battle.

The monument was originally estimated to cost $250,000, but inflation and rising construction costs caused by the coronavirus pandemic have pushed its price up to $350,000.

To date, Steinbrunner’s group has raised $225,000 for the project.

The plan is to start clearing land for the project as early as January.

Steinbrunner is also pleased that $50,000 donated by the Lorain County Honors Fund will be used to improve drainage at the site.

The largest project in progress is the Ohio Hispanic Memorial in Oakwood Park.

Victor Leandry, a member of the committee building the monument, confirmed that the city of Lorraine has already donated $75,000 to the project.

The late Ser Rivera, a longtime Lorraine Police Chief who died last summer, was the driving force behind the project.

After Rivera’s death, the project was put on hold.

But thanks to the efforts of Leandry and his committee, the project has been rekindled.

Leandry, who is also executive director of the Latino nonprofit El Centro De Servicios Soc, said in Rivera’s honor that he and his committee are working on the project.

The ultimate vision for the Ohio Hispanic Memorial is to be part of a larger group of Veterans Memorials that honor the vast number of different nationalities that make up Lorraine’s population.

The goal is to make it a veteran lane that various groups can keep adding to.

Rivera’s original plan was to install a small plaque honoring Hispanic veterans.

But those modest plans have evolved into a multi-phase project costing as much as $1 million just to complete the first two phases.

Leandry and his group envision this as one of the destinations visited by veterans.

And now, the Lorraine County Commissioner will be part of the history of three memorials to veterans for their contributions.

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