Memorial: Lest We Forget

All Veterans Memorial to be dedicated Saturday

The Ottumwa (IA) Courier - July, 2003

By JUDY KRIEGER Courier staff writer

Ottumwa All Veterans Memorial

A MASTER'S TOUCH: Mason contractor Oran Derby crouches in close Wednesday to work on the Korean War panel before moving over to supervise the installation of another granite panel which make up the All Veterans Memorial constructed in Ottumwa.

"It will be a nice little veterans park when it's done," Cale said.

The association includes about 30 members and will continue to meet the forth Tuesday of the month at the UAW Local 74 Hall.

About 20 people have attended most of the meetings, Mulcahy said.

"They've done a lot of work and deserve a big pat on the back."

Members have moved a large stone commemorating Iowa world war veterans from Sycamore Park and plan to move the cannon com­memorating the Spanish-American War next week. They also will add the memorial stone commemorating the 1976 Bicentennial to Ottumwa Park.

Stone for the large gray slabs is from Barre, Vt, and the black granite is from a Pennsylvania quarry. Creative Edge of Fairfield made the designs using a water cut­ting system.

The $30,000 memorial includes funds to add more landscaping to the site and for maintenance. The stonework cost about $22,000, Mulcahy said.

OTTUMWA — It was sweaty work Wednesday — hoisting slabs of granite in the hot afternoon sun.

The laborers, though, volunteered their time to turn the dream of an All Veterans Memorial into a reality.

Oran Derby, mason contractor, directed the assembly of the five granite stones.

Steve Mulcahy and Bill Cale of the All Veterans Memorial Association watched as the group's memorial took shape.

Supporters of the memorial began meeting in August, the memorial was designed in September, and fund-raising efforts were started.

The nearly year-long effort is coming to fruition this week, as planned.

The five-stone memorial which honors everyone who served in the armed forces will be dedicated Saturday.

"It's awesome," Cale said of the 4-foot granite stones which form a semi-circle.

In the middle is a 5-foot stone. The inscription reads:

"To those who served

We dedicate these memorials

  • Grenada 1983
  • Lebanon 1983
  • Panama 1989


Lest we forget our POW/MIAs — whose war has not yet ended."

Stainless steel circles represent the U.S. Navy, Air Force, Army, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.

A stainless steel eagle is mounted over red mosaic stone at the top of the large gray granite slab.

The slabs are set in polished black granite mounted on cement.

The four smaller stones represent four wars, with dates and stainless steel art work: World War II 1941, drawing of the flag-raising on Iwo Jima; Korea 1950, a map of Korea and four servicemen; Vietnam 1964, three soldiers; Desert Storm 1991, an eagle.

The stones face the Desert Storm flagpole located near the entrance to Ottumwa Park. Flying on the pole are an American flag and a POW/MIA flag.

Behind the memorial are three large poles holding American flags.