Archive for August 1, 2013

Veterans MEMORIAL Park- thanks for the memories

Vetname collage
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge

Part One \
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/15/veterans-memorial-park-a-neglected-disgrace-again/

Part Two
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/17/veterans-memorial-park-the-name-game/

Part Three
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/25/veterans-memorial-park-the-englishman-commeth/

Part Four
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/27/veterans-memorial-park-history-tear-down/

Part Five
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/29/veterans-memorial-park-the-veterans-council-speaks/

Part Six
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/31/veterans-memorial-park-faulty-memory/

After a great deal of talking, the Veteran’s organizations under the umbrella of a Lorain Veterans Council entered into a contract with the City of Lorain for a further $346,500.00 to renovate Washington Ave Park/Lorain Memorial Park.

Interestingly enough even the contract language can’t seem to make up its mind as to the “name” of the park – front page of the contract-
Washington Park– Under the “money agreement” it is –Lorain Memorial Park– and farther down in the language- Veterans Memorial Park.
Maybe the funding was for three different parks ( sarcasm abounds)
The PDF file of the 1983 contract is to be found here :
20130731142325211.pdf

It also seems questions were once again being asked at city council meetings on May 21st- 1984

May 21 1984 min

(PDF File Here)
may-july1984

Now we jump forward back in time to the Plain Dealer article of 1990 ( full article found here )Veterans park

PD opening

Apparently the Park ( whatever its name)
was “finished” in 1987 and then “died by 1990” according to Jack LaVirha.

We were also dealing with the “skateboarders” back 23 years ago vandalizing the park not much has changed apparently. . The newly installed benches found Jack complaining as to their condition just THREE YEARS after the “finish”.

“Veterans raised money to install benches and dedicated to the memory of a deceased person

bench collage

Those benches are still there today .

Could it be after spending a total of $463,526.00 from 1983 through 1987, changing the whole look and feel of the little public square,

cvpark

the organizations, under the umbrella of the Lorain Veterans Council , threw up their hands and walked away after they declared it dead!

Did the Veterans Council of the day( and also of today ) relieve themselves of all responsibility to that little historic park after they “renovated it? ? Was it and is back to the tax payers to revive her once again?

Baileyres
Apparently, according to then Parks Director Steven Bailey the Parks Dept were never consulted in the design etc

:”LaVirha complains about the park, but Bailey said it was the veterans who hired and worked with the architects [ Ron Cocco of Clark and Post]to “design the park and settled on the concrete foundation and amphitheater.

ED NOTE: It is apparent to me that number 7 in the contractual requirements

No 7: Establish a design that can be easily and economically maintained by the City of Lorain

and number 8

No 8 Utilize products and materials that are durable , easily maintained and resistant to vandalism


weren’t strictly adhered to-

WHO TURNED NEARLY $500,000 DOLLARS INTO A BOONDOGGLE, BAD NEWS AND DEAD PARK?

The question begs to be asked, of the powers that be back in the 80’s- why did we lose the integrity and ambiance of ‘public square- into what it has become today?

Was it lack of oversight by administrations – councils- giving an organization free reign without follow through accountability- poor architectural design, which in the opinion of many changed the this little park into a concrete clump! We are seemingly stuck with the decisions of those involved back in the 1980’s- the 1980’s known as the “Decade that Made Us “ certainly left its mark on us!

This little park who is now supposedly born out of the “Sufferers” need for settlement after the War of Independence – See Part Two:

The western end of the reserve included the 500,000 acres (2,000 km2) Firelands or “Sufferers Lands,” reserved for residents of several New England towns destroyed by British-set fires during the Revolutionary War

vets sign

and whose signage states “for those that have served our nation” and whose monument also states

” In grateful tribute to the Lorain men and women who served their county in ALL WARS”

has been a silent witness to the wars of this nation:

War of Independence 1775-1783 25,000
Northwest Indian War 1785-1795 1,221
Quasi-War 1798-1800 20

1812 Public Square became a “deeded park”

Barbary Wars 1801-1815 35
War of 1812 1812-1815 20,000
1st Seminole War 1817-1818 30
2nd Seminole War 1835-1842 1,500
Mexican-American War 1846-1848 13,283
3rd Seminole War 1855-1858 26
Civil War 1861-1865 623,026
Indian Wars 1865-1898 919
Spanish-American War 1898 2,446
Philippine War 1898-1902 4,196
Boxer Rebellion 1900-1901 37
Mexican Revolution 1914-1919 35
Haiti Occupation 1915-1934 146
World War 1 1917-1918 116,708
World War 2 1941-1945 407,316
Korean War 1950-1953 36,914
Vietnam War 1964-1973 58,169
El Salvador 1980-1992 20
Beirut 1982-1984 266
Persian Gulf (Support) 1987-1988 39
Invasion of Grenada 1983 19
Invasion of Panama 1989 40
Persian Gulf War 1991 269
Somalia 1992-1993 43
Bosnia 1995 12
Afghanistan 2002-2011 2,229
Iraq 2003- 4,488

Oh what IF forethought had been utilized in 1983 and the trouble saved in hindsight.
http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2011/10/26/news/doc4ea778dbc8d28244358157.txMJ vandilsmt

The little park limped along until another Mayor- Craig Foltin , Jack LaVirha ( who was still in favour of spending yet more money and walking away) , The Lorain Veterans Council, another architect Warren Finkel ( designer of Lorain City Hall ), Jon Veard, and Morning Journal editor John Cole rallied round and decided in 2006 to “bury” this little park once and for all- that is until “an Englishwoman cometh” 😉

Thank you once again to Nancy Greer and the City of Lorain Mayors office for the documentation and of course to Dan Brady for the newspaper archives

To be continued……………..

August 1, 2013 at 4:13 pm 10 comments


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