The Edina Park Board’s Veterans Memorial Committee is leading an effort to build an Edina Veterans Memorial with ACI Asphalt’s help.
Edina’s rich and proud legacy of patriotic service extends back to the Civil War. The Edina Veterans Memorial will be a unifying symbol of shared community values in honoring all Edina veterans of our nation’s armed forces — past, present and future. The 32 native and adopted sons of Edina who died in the time of war will be individually remembered at the new Veteran’s Memorial to be built at the intersection of 50th Street and Woodale Avenue at Utley Park in Edina.
The Veterans Memorial Committee has reached its fundraising goal and began construction of the memorial in the fall of 2014. Fundraising for the memorial generated over $450,000.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Friday, Sept. 19 at the site of the memorial in Utley Park.
In 2010, the memorial was budgeted to cost $450,000. Over the past three years, committee members were busy visiting with donors and state government leaders. Those efforts have resulted in the Veterans Memorial Committee raising $196,380 in private cash donations, including a $100,000 contribution from Dave Frauenshuh and his family and $20,000 from the Edina Rotary Foundation. In addition, the Edina City Council approved $39,461 in City funds, the state of Minnesota issued a Legacy Fund grant in the amount of $9,900 available upon completion of the project and the State legislature issued a general matching grant in the amount of $225,000.
The approved plan features:
• V-shaped granite plaza (emblematic of “victory”) leading up to the focal point of the memorial.
• An eagle and flag design will be a focal point.
• The wall will feature the names of the 32 Edina soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty since the City’s founding.
• Three illuminated flagpoles will be placed at the edge of the plaza hoisted with the American flag, state flags and white on black POW flag to honor troops in captivity or missing in action.
Construction of the memorial is nearing its end. A dedication ceremony will be held in honor of the City’s new memorial – 10 a.m. Memorial Day, Monday, May 25 at Utley Park, 4521 W. 50th St. Edina Mayor Jim Hovland and state and locally elected officials will speak. The First John Philip Sousa Memorial Band will play beginning at 9:30 a.m. The Committee encourages the public especially veterans, donors and Edina residents to attend the event.
The Committee is still collecting donations for ongoing maintenance of the memorial. Donations can be sent to the Edina Community Foundation, 5280 Grandview Square or you can donate online.