STARKE COUNTY – At the Nov. 18 joint meeting of County Council and Commissioners, Jeff V. Berg and JJ Weinberg gave a presentation that displays the proposed design for the new Veterans War Memorial. The memorial would be located where the current memorial is located at the southwest corner of the Starke County Courthouse.
The committee behind this project consisted of Berg, Weinberg, County Councilman Bob Sims, County Commissioners Bryan Cavender and Kathy Norem, and Mark Smith.
A video was shown to the county officials that showed the plans for the memorial. “We’re pretty stoked about this. What we have is a monument that’s going to be a nice quality of place area for all to enjoy, future generations to be sure,” stated Berg. He added that the video was designed by Weinberg and partner Benjamin Garcia.
The proposed memorial would add veterans that lost their lives from both the Civil War and World War One. The names of the veterans will be etched in a black granite wall that will be located in a longer wall that will potentially be made from limestone. Berg mentioned that seating will also be available, and it will be ADA compliant from the street. The canons that are currently located at the courthouse would be relocated to be placed behind the wall. Also located behind the wall, would be the American flag as well as the five flags of the Armed Forces. LED lights would be positioned around the memorial in order to provide illumination during the night hours.
Weinberg stated that the design is meant to be “more of a plaza experience.” He drew inspiration from the many memorials he’s visited across the country.
Also featured in the memorial is the county’s Medal of Honor recipient, Frank Ono.
In order to make space for the memorial, three trees will be taken down, most likely in the Spring.
The total cost for the memorial hasn’t been figured since various factors are still being decided upon. However, if there are individuals that would like to donate to the creation of the memorial, donations can be directed to Jeff V. Berg at 106 S. Pearl in Knox until a financial representative could be found. During the meeting, County Councilman Freddie Baker, Commissioner Cavender, and an individual from the public all pledged to donate. Cavender also informed Berg that the Sons of the American Legion would be donating funds toward the memorial.
When asked about the current memorials, Berg assured everyone that the current memorial would not be destroyed and that a new location for it would be located, potentially at an American Legion or VFW.
More updates will follow in the future.