Progress on the expansion of DeGlopper Memorial Park is ongoing thanks to major donations of supplies and manpower, but the committee spearheading the project says more is needed for work to continue.
DeGlopper Memorial Park Expansion Committee member Chris Taylor said this week that the group is "blown away by the awesome generosity of some of the businesses here in WNY!" He thanked several people and businesses responsible for laying down a new blacktop parking area, the latest upgrade to the park at the intersection of Baseline Road and Grand Island Boulevard.
Taylor credited Ed Colan, owner of Quarry Products, for delivering stone, which was donated by Lafarge North America and used as the base for the blacktop. Dave Roetzer, owner of Amherst Paving, provided the manpower.
"These guys did an amazing job leaving us with a beautiful new parking area and sacrificed a ton of time during their peak season to get this done," Taylor said.
"Many people do not realize the cost of a parking lot this size but I can tell you that it is substantial and the unfortunate fact is we did not have the money to come anywhere near paying for this. Even with these guys donating all of their time and most of the materials, there were still significant costs to getting this parking lot paved," Taylor said. "If it were not for the generosity of a couple of Islanders willing to loan us the money interest-free, we still would not have been able to move forward with the parking lot."
Taylor said the all-volunteer committee is facing "some major expenses in the near future" and needs more donations to keep the project moving forward. The memorial will honor past, present and future veterans from all branches of the military. The park is named after Medal of Honor recipient Charles DeGlopper of Grand Island, who lost his life in Normandy during the D-Day invasion.