Foundation Set Up for Veterans Park
Written by Andrew-Rossi on December 20, 2017
The group that oversees the State Veteran’s Memorial Park in Cody has regrouped and formed a foundation to manage donations that will help with maintenance and additions to the Park.
Karen Ballinger and Sharon Smith, board members for the new Wyoming Veteran’s Memorial Park Foundation, appeared on KODI’s Partyline this week to talk about the new foundation. Smith noted that their mission is to help maintain and preserve the park for the enjoyment of all, and to honor those who have fallen in service to our country.
Smith points out that while private donations funded the memorials, the City maintains the park – and the new foundation will be able to help the City of Cody with unexpected expenses.
Mayor Nancy Tia Brown and the sitting council several years ago created a committee that was meant to oversee and advise the Council on the evolution and promotion of the park, which Governor Dave Freudenthal designated as the State’s Veteran Memorial. However, Ballinger pointed out that the advisory council had no real power to affect the park’s growth. So Smith says the committee this year took steps to create a 501-c-3 that would be able to mindfully manage the donations that came in from the public and other organizations.
S Ballinger said that the Foundation is working with local sculptor John Phelps to create the next memorial on the park land, located at the east entrance to Cody. She said although there have been some delays due to the artist suffering an injury, Phelps is diligently working towards having the War Dog memorial ready for its dedication in August.
And Smith pointed out that the community can continue to support the park by purchasing paving bricks, which help to memorialize those who have served in the military, but aren’t listed on the monuments.