The veterans memorial was unveiled to the Glendale community on Friday, June 9 at Richard E. Maslowski Glendale Community Park, 2200 W. Bender Road. Jeff Rumage
GLENDALE - The military service of more than 40 Glendale residents is honored through a new veterans memorial at a new Glendale park.
The veterans memorial was unveiled to the Glendale community Friday, June 9, at Richard E. Maslowski Glendale Community Park, 2200 W. Bender Road. The park's pavilion, amphitheater, playground and veteran's memorial have been completed, but some landscaping work needs to be finished before the park's grand opening is held in two weeks.
A plaque in the center of the circular plaza says the memorial is "in tribute to the men and women who have served and continued to serve as defenders of our liberties in this great nation."
The perimeter of the plaza is adorned with five flags and five plaques representing the five branches of the military.
The veterans memorial is sponsored by Orthopaedic Hospital of Wisconsin. Honoring military veterans is a deeply personal and important cause for Orthopaedic Hospital of Wisconsin CEO Brian Cramer, who served in the Air Force for 23 years.
Cramer's father, John, was a tail gunner in the Army during World War II. He was shot in both of his arms and both of his legs, and was held as a prisoner of war in Germany for 16 months.
"I have a great respect for what the veterans in attendance have done and your military service; many of you have similar stories," Cramer said. "Without your service, we would not be able to enjoy the freedoms we have today."
The five plaques honor 43 military veterans who have lived in Glendale at any time since the city was incorporated in 1950 and who hold an honorable discharge. The veterans memorial was coordinated by Glendale Alderman Richard Wiese, who said additional military veterans will be added every year.
Among those on the Army plaque was Glendale resident Bruce Cole, who was stationed in Germany from 1968 to 1970.
"It's not every day you get your name etched in stone," he told Wiese after the ceremony.
Glendale resident Peter Gurneau, who served in the Army Reserve, said he was honored to be listed next to his father, Charles Gurneau, and stepfather, Helmuth Lucht, both of whom served in World War II.
"I'm really glad that Glendale has done something like this," he said.
Glendale Mayor Bryan Kennedy thanked Wiese for his work on the veterans memorial, which he said lives up to the city's motto: "rich past, bright future."
"It is very poignant that we stand here and honor part of our rich past — the veterans who served this country, on whose backs freedom and democracy have been built — and right behind us is the bright future, where children can play," Kennedy said. "This park is to become the heart of our community."
The names on the plaques are as follows:
Coast Guard: John Krezoski (Vietnam) and James Landwehr (Korea)
Air Force: Bernard Endejan (Korea), Harold Glick (WWII), Michael Herkowski (Vietnam), David Jones (Korea), Ronald Lee, Jon Lessila, Sr. (Gulf War), Paul Lex (Vietnam)
Navy: Ronald Faucette, Sr. (Korea), Giles Grimes (Vietnam), Charles Holzman (Vietnam), George Jelich (WWII and Korea), Paul Keppeler, John Kilian (WWII), Scott Pioso (Gulf War), David Porter (Vietnam), Otto Salomon (WWII), Robert Talasek (WWII), Nobert Whittle (Korea) and Robert Wieczorek.
Marines: Kenneth Stelzel (WWII and Korea)
Army: Jude Anders (Vietnam), Bruce Cole (Vietnam), Brian Cook (Vietnam), Wayne Diedrich (Gulf War), Bernard Endejan (WWII), Robert Geiser (National Guard), Charles Gurneau (Reserve), Michael Harloff (Vietnam), Leon Heun (Korea), Robert Hodgson (Korea), Jeffery Huntsinger (Vietnam), Warren Johnson (Berlin Crisis), Patrick Kenehan (Korea), Russel Lesperance (WWII), Helmuth Lucht (WWII), John Manning, Paul Melrod (WWII), Timothy Orth (Gulf War), Robert Richards, Robert Stone (WWII) and Norman Wallace (Vietnam)