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Heber City Mayor's Message March 2011

The City Council approved the building of a veterans’ memorial for the Heber City Cemetery. Mark Rounds, Cemetery and Parks Director, furnished the Council some background information on veterans’ memorials at cemeteries around Utah. Ralph Lugton, American Legion, shared a presentation with the City Council of what a memorial might look like. The Council invited Ralph to participate in the planning and building of a memorial. We are currently in the planning stages and a definitive memorial has yet to be laid out, although a memorial site in the cemetery has been identified. Discussions have included how veterans should be recognized: names, eras of military service, etc. It was agreed that honor should be given to those who served on active duty, and not be limited to those who gave the total measure and died on active duty or from injuries suffered in the military. Although the City has some money set aside to build this memorial, the issue of funding the memorial to completion still needs to be addressed.

Around the country, cities and towns have honored veterans with memorials, statues, monuments, marble and stone slabs, and flags. There are increasing numbers of women being deployed, with the number of female veterans doubling in the last decade. Currently, women make up approximately 14% of the nation's active duty force; 18% of the National Guard and 15% of Reserve forces.

In speaking of a memorial at a cemetery in Utah, one individual commented "When you look at those names up there, these are men and women who served our country ... the least we can do is honor them and remember them, absolutely never forget them and the sacrifice that they have given. That's why I think it is so important that we have these memorials. People can go and spend time and read those names and just gain such a great appreciation for the sacrifice that those men and women gave to our country."

The City Council wants to afford volunteers in our community the opportunity to participate in the planning and building of this veterans’ memorial. We would invite interested citizens to contact the City offices at 654-0757, and let us know if they are interested.

BY DAVE PHILLIPS   03/01/2011

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