Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:58 am
The first annual Memorial Day Ceremony to be held at the site of the future Veterans Bell Tower Memorial in Pewaukee will take place at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 29.
According to Greg Kolton, Veterans Bell Tower Memorial chair and Foundations Bank president and CEO, the event will be the first of many to honor American Veterans and to continue to raise money for the construction of the Veterans Bell Tower Memorial.
“This will be our first celebration on site since our ground breaking in 2006,” Kolton said. “The event will give us an opportunity to honor our country’s veterans and bring awareness to the need for a memorial like the Veterans Bell Tower in the area.”
The memorial site is located at Capitol Drive and Hwy 164. Proposed plans are to construct a 57-foot bell tower that would house a set of eight change-ringing bells donated by Roland Perschon, village resident and bell aficionado.
The site also would offer a memorial designed to educate visitors and celebrate Wisconsin Veterans, said Kolton, who is also a veteran. Kiosks would feature educational presentations on the Wisconsin military units that served in various wars and conflicts.
According to Kolton, ceremony attendees will have the opportunity to learn more about the proposed Veterans Bell Tower Memorial project as well as purchase bricks to be inscribed with a veterans name and laid in the memorial’s courtyard.
The program will include a military fly over, a display of military vehicles and Friends of Reclaiming our Heritage will provide cast members to portray characters from historic battles in American history. Jonathan Green, WTMJ radio personality will emcee the event, and a Harley-Davidson motorcycle brigade will escort a bronze bell, cast at the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in London England, to and from the site.
Iraq war veteran Jacob Heinitz will also be present to describe his experience overseas, Charlene Cobb, VFW state chaplain will be on hand at the ceremony, music by the Hartland Community band, and presentation and retirement of the colors by Sussex Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6377.
After the colors are retired, attendees are encouraged to attend the Veterans Festival in Village Park.
The Veterans Bell Tower Memorial currently has about 25 percent of the needed funding, but hopes to begin construction next spring, Kolton said.