Liberty Field will get new black granite plaques along the veterans walk to replace those damaged by two recent floods, thanks to the Pacific tourism commission.
Resident Pat Smiley installed the 32 3-foot by 2-foot plaques, each depicting a snapshot of U.S. military history, in 2015 as a community service project.
Opening of the display was met with great fanfare in September 2015 when area veterans, many in wheelchairs, gathered to traverse the one-mile walking trail around the perimeter of the park’s soccer fields and equestrian center, where the markers are placed approximately 60 paces apart.
The etched photos and messages outlining activities of veterans in U.S. wars have faded or been washed off many of the plaques by weather and the rigors of two floods.
Alderman Mike Pigg, who serves as liaison to the tourism commission, reported Oct. 3 that the tourism commission had allocated $9,000 to begin purchasing replacement plaques.
“They (tourism commission) will start with the most defaced plaques,” Pigg said. “They will budget more next year and continue until all the plaques are replaced.”
Pigg noted that the display, which has been hugely popular with residents and visitors, is a great public service addition to the city park system.
“It’s a great asset in our city park system and we need to take care of it,” Pigg said.