ECHO PARK — There was music, poetry and tears. About 50 people, including military veterans, gathered on a hilltop this past Flag Day to rededicate the restored Victory Memorial Grove, a nearly century-old monument to Veterans of World War I.
The restoration of the memorial is part of efforts to commemorate the centennial of the nation’s entry into World War I, also known as The Great War and The War to End All Wars. Courtland Jindra, a member of the California WWI Centennial Task Force, worked with the Hollywood American Legion Post 43 and the Los Angeles Eschscholtzia Chapter Daughters to raise funds and recruit volunteers for the restoration.
The rededication ceremony was held on Flag Day, June 14 — 96 years after the original ceremony. The program included the LAPD Honor Guard and the Santa Monica Oceanaires, a group of men who sang the National Anthem, Grand Old Flag, God Bless America and An Irish Blessing, all a cappella, said Sandy Driscoll, who attended the morning ceremony and took photos. Poems were read and a roll call of honor was held for the 21 men and one woman who are honored on the original plaque. As each short biography was read, a volunteer walked to the memorial and placed a red carnation over the top. After the unveiling, ‘Taps’ was played.
“My most heartfelt moment was afterwards, when I shook the hand of a proud WWII veteran and thanked him for his service. He said, ‘Thank you so much for coming. It means a lot. This brings back so many memories for me.’ And then, with tears glistening in his eyes he added ‘and it makes me think of my friends who did not make it.'”
- More Echo Park stories
- Got a news tip or photo to share? Submit it here
Can’t get enough Echo Park news? Sign up for The Eastsider’s Echo Park Weekly email newsletter. Echo Park Weekly features EP-centric stories, tidbits, advice, observations, information as well as the week’s top news.
Jesús Sanchez, Publisher
Please fill out every field
Problem with the form? Let us know