More than $3,000 was raised and donated in recent fundraisers for the expansion of the DeGlopper Memorial.
Pictured, Ray DeGlopper, left, receives checks and funds from Chris Taylor, who organized and helped conduct a recent fundraiser that included matching donation by an Island benefactor.
The money will go to pay for work that will redesign and expand DeGlopper Park at the intersection of Grand Island Boulevard and Baseline Road. The park is named after Charles N. DeGlopper, a Grand Island native and U.S. Army soldier who posthumously received the Congressional Medal of Honor after giving his life for his country on June 9, 1944, during the D-Day invasion.
Taylor said money is needed so work can start on the project in June of 2017, the 73rd anniversary of DeGlopper's death in Normandy. Among the design features planned for the DeGlopper Memorial will be personalized memorial pavers, flagpoles with the flags from each arm of the military, black granite walls with engravings of the names of Grand Island residents who have served, a Gold Star for mothers of the fallen, benches for visitors and parking. The park footprint will expand as well.
The Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Expansion Committee, Pfc. Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 9249, Grand Island American Legion Post No. 1346, and Grand Island Moose Lodge No. 180 have continued fundraising for the project. A ground-breaking for the DeGlopper Memorial expansion was held June 9, 2016.
Fundraisers for the expansion project are appreciated. For instance, veteran and committee member Ray DeGlopper was grateful to Connor Middle School students, under the direction of social studies teacher Dawn Hayes, who held a poppy sale fundraiser and donated $244.
"If an organization like the middle school kids want to put on a different event, I'd be more than happy to help them out with that," said Taylor. If anyone would like to contribute, call Taylor at 716-725-5750.
Pictured behind DeGlopper and Taylor at the DeGlopper Memorial are Lyle Dinsmore, Kathy Yensan, Jeff Dinsmore, John Forrest, Clark Nesbitt, Al Prame, Mike Yensan, Mike Madigan, Dan Morabito, Joe Synakowski, Dan McMahon, Alan Lee, Paul Conklin and Dan Drexelius. (Photo by Larry Austin)