The eventual construction of a veterans memorial in Palmerton has just received a boost.
That's because the Horsehead Community Development Fund agreed to donate $5,000 toward the construction of the memorial.
Members of the HCDF met recently in the borough park with the Palmerton United Veteran's Organization and borough officials to present the contribution.
Joe Uhnak, of the PUVO, said the organization accepted the gesture on behalf of all veterans living and deceased.
"We just wanted to give a grateful thank you for the amount that they gave us," Uhnak said. "It was nice of them to do this for us for the memorial that we're building for all of the veterans."
Ann Campton, chairperson of the Horsehead Community Development Fund, said the donation was "something we're glad to do."
The Horsehead Community Development Fund, Inc., was established by Horsehead Resource Development Co., Inc., to fund certain charitable projects in and around the borough.
Since 1989, the Horsehead Community Development Fund has given out $2.8 million in donations, said Bill Smelas, executive consultant.
The Palmerton United Veteran's Organization and the borough plan to build the memorial to honor all of the Palmerton area servicemen and women as a tribute to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, and to those who served to preserve our freedom.
The memorial will include names of veterans from the American Revolutionary Era to the present – a span of over 230 years – who either entered the service while a resident of the Palmerton area, or who have lived in the area at least half of their adult life.
A series of meetings produced a draft drawing. The centerpiece was donated by Richard Nothstein, a borough council member who spearheaded the project.
The centerpiece is a sculpture entitled "Some Gave All," and depicts a gun and helmet. The sculpture will be surrounded by a wide walkway and standing stones with the names of veterans.
Those who were killed in action will be named on the base of the sculpture. To qualify, veterans need not have seen action. Peacetime veterans will also be honored.
The memorial will be located on a section of land 35-by-40 feet in size in the lower southwest corner of the borough park, where the present flagpole is situated, and will include a list of all veterans' names on granite monuments from all time periods of service.
The sculpture one of 10 that were created will consist of between 30 and 40 slabs of granite with the names of about 200 veterans per slab engraved on the granite. It was made by James N. Mur of Sedona, Ariz., who sent a plaque to Nothstein that told about the sculpture's beginnings. A poem by Major Michael Davis O'Donnell is on one side of the base that was written for soldiers killed in a battle in Vietnam.
The memorial will be dedicated on Veterans Day, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012, to mark the 100-year celebration of the borough.
To date, about $35,000 of the expected $123,000 cost has been raised, said Ed Moyer, of the PUVO. Moyer said an additional $10,000 in grant money could also be received after the Corbett administration approved $48 million for local projects sought by specific lawmakers popularly known as WAMs, for "walking around money."
Opportunities to say thank you to veterans can be by a listing on the granite wall individual or family name for a $500 donation, and a corporate or business name for $750.
Walkway opportunities include a 10-by-14 inch granite block for $200, and can include a military emblem; a 6-inch by 9-inch paver for $50; or a 4-inch by 8-inch paver for $40.
The necessary information should include the individual's name, branch of service, dates of service, rank, date of birth, residence at time of induction, and years living in the Palmerton area.
The information should be sent to the Palmerton Legion, P.O. Box 84 Palmerton, Pa 18071, or Palmerton VFW, 2020 Forest Inn Road, Palmerton, Pa 18071.
Moyer said information about the memorial can be viewed on Facebook, under Palmerton Area Servicemen and Women Memorial, and on palmertonuvo.org.
Anyone with questions, or those who want to submit the information, may contact Uhnak at (610) 826-2902, or firstname.lastname@example.org, Moyer at (610) 504-6680, or email@example.com, or Nothstein at (610) 826-7339, or firstname.lastname@example.org.