Boardman community leaders raising money for safety-services memorial
By Jordyn Grzelewski
Sometimes, we take for granted the police officers and firefighters who keep us safe, township Trustee Larry Moliterno said at a news conference unveiling plans for a safety-services memorial.
Community leaders plan to build the memorial at the site of the new fire station on Market Street.
Then, “maybe we won’t take it for granted so much,” Moliterno said Tuesday. “And maybe every day this visual will remind us how lucky we are to live in this township.”
The event marked the start of a fundraising campaign for the project, which organizers estimate will cost about $100,000.
About $15,000 already has been raised. Boardman Police FOP Lodge 43 and Boardman Firefighters Local 1176 donated $2,000 apiece; the Boardman Lions Club, which is leading the project with the two police and fire organizations, donated $1,000; and Western Reserve Building Trades donated $5,000 and committed $5,000 worth of in-kind services.
The memorial will honor the safety-services workers who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C., with a reflecting pool in the shape of a pentagon.
Behind the reflecting pool will stand two walls, one honoring police, the other honoring firefighters. Between the walls will be two towers (a nod to the World Trade Center’s twin towers), one projecting red light, the other projecting blue.
Images of police officers and firefighters holding up flags will be laser cut onto the walls.
Jim Dorman and Jerre Patterson, retired township fire and police chiefs, respectively, are leading the fundraising effort.
“It is our hope we keep in our memories those who have died through their sacrifices to the community,” Dorman said.
He noted many safety-services workers have long-term health issues because of their jobs, and said the memorial honors those sacrifices, too.
“Together we can show our appreciation for the job these people do,” Patterson said of the women and men tasked with protecting the township.
For information about the project or to donate, visit SafetyServicesMemorial.com.