Lest we forget. It’s a phrase passed down from generation to generation—one that’s endured for years in the face of untold conflict and death. It serves as the inspiration for the Delaware County Veterans Memorial, slated for 2012 completion along West Chester Pike at Alice Grim Boulevard in Newtown Square.
Nearly 10 years in the making, the $1 million project was spearheaded by local veterans Steve Neri, Stan Short, Tony Fizzano and Frank Videon, Esq., among others. Neri, Short and Fizzano have since passed, but their commitment to honoring the fallen and current members of the U.S. Armed Forces is alive and well.
“Even if you don’t believe in war, the fact that these men and women are protecting or have protected our freedoms is important,” says Barbara Ann Zippi, spokesperson for the Delaware County Veterans Memorial Association. “It takes a lot to go into volunteer service—and that deserves recognition.”
The DCVMA’s plans call for a sweeping compound that pays tribute to all foreign and domestic conflicts, beginning with the Revolutionary War. Designed pro bono by West Chester’s George Matuszewski, the circular layout represents unity, while an eagle and fountains symbolize freedom and peace, respectively.
The granite walls signify stability and will be engraved with the names of all Delaware County veterans, a project coordinated by Zippi and members of the DCVMA. A colonnade of nine marble columns outlines the memorial, each one identifying a foreign war in which the U.S. took part.
The memorial has been approved for grading permits, and construction planning and fundraising efforts are underway.
“What some people forget is that we are still currently at war,” Zippi notes. “The cost of freedom is not free.”
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