Monday, October 15, 2007

Graham Veterans Bridge Committee Seeks Names for Memorial Walk

As work is completed on the Staff Sergeant Shawn A. Graham Veterans Memorial Bridge, the Memorial Walk project is now hitting its stride. Planners are seeking names of fallen soldiers from the area.

The bridge was renamed by Mercer County Commissioners in April to reflect the wishes of Borough Council and the Graham family, who initially made the request. The idea of a Memorial Walk arose during discussions of how to honor fallen service members from Grove City.

“We wanted a fitting way to honor residents who paid the ultimate price for our freedoms,” said Councilman Rich Talbert. Talbert is part of a group of planners that includes local politicians and military families. “We decided that it would be special to collect names and have a couple large plaques created to affix to the bridge along the sidewalk.”

Planners soon realized that the task was difficult. “There are many sources that have names of Grove City residents who have served,” noted Talbert, “but there are very few that have the names of those who died while serving. On top of that, most records are listed by county, not by town.”

Planners are seeking help from residents, so a Web site has been created to help collect names. “If anyone has names of Grove City residents who have died while serving, we’re asking them to visit,” Talbert said. “Visitors to the site can leave a comment with the name of the service person.”

The planners will be collecting names until late winter, when they will finalize the list and order the plaques. “We want to make sure we take enough time to get a complete list,” said Talbert. “We want to make sure all who have sacrificed everything are honored.”

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