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Brooklyn War Memorial Closed to Vets (#ProudAmerican)

Brooklyn War Memorial Closed to Vets (#ProudAmerican)

“We were faced with a terror that was unbelievable”

What happens when the money backing a war memorial dries up? The doors shut, tourists and veterans are turned away, and the memorabilia and plaques inside languish under a layer of dust.

This is exactly what has happened to the Brooklyn War Memorial.

The Memorial, built 64 years ago, has never been accessible to the general public, which means that only a few people have ever been able to stand before the 11,000 names etched into its inside walls, representing Brooklynites who died fighting in World War II. According to a GoFundMe page set up by the Cadman Park Conservancy, the memorial is in need of a serious overhaul; new stone work, new roof, new electric, new plumbing, new glass, insulation, and a handicapped accessible ramp, bathrooms, and elevator are all needed before the site can be completely opened to visitors.

Getting the site up to speed is going to be an enormous undertaking—but a devoted group of veterans and supporters are determined to make that dream a reality. Yesterday, the surrounding community rallied at the memorial to honor the fallen and kick off the restoration effort:

“(How much does this mean to you?) Unbelievable,” said Max Nemerovsky, a WWII veteran from Bensonhurst.

“It’s great to think people are still thinking of World War II,” said David Epstein, a WWII veteran from Bergen Beach.

“I was the one who was honored to serve,” said WWII veteran David Kaplan, of Brooklyn Heights.

Kaplan, 95, served in the Army at 22, stationed in the Pacific and Philippines, CBS2’s Ilana Gold reported.

“We were faced with a terror that was unbelievable, the threat of Nazism among others,” he said.

And Sunday’s event went beyond remembrance. The goal now, is to reopen and completely restore the Brooklyn War Memorial, which is currently not handicapped accessible.

“To open this and make it ADA accessible so people can actually see it,” said Laurel Brown, with the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership.

Fox and Friends aired a story about the four Vanasco brothers, who all fought in World War II, and who are also fighting to get the memorial up and running again:

This is just a story of a local war memorial; there’s no Congressional angle or sequestration drama here—but then again, that’s the point.

Memorial Day is about the fallen warriors from our hometowns. It’s about honoring their bravery and their sacrifice, and giving their brothers in arms a chance to do the same. It’s not about the buildings and the statues, but at the same time, the buildings and the statues are important because they remind us that the war didn’t just happen 4000 miles away.

It’s the homefront’s duty to remember.


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Never Forget and Thank you for those who gave all

Hear, hear!

Amy, thank you for this post!

Walk by this every day and always assumed there was no interior.

Why exclude the general public. Seems to me the majority of the general public would be appreciative of those from Brooklyn who fought and died in WW2. And would therefore support the memorial.

JackRussellTerrierist | May 25, 2015 at 3:50 pm

It is a disgrace for this to happen. Can’t those rich lefties in NY cough up some money to honor those who made their wealth and comfortable lives possible?

    Leftists never roll that way.

    Rudyard Kipling


    “The eradication of memories of the Great War. -SOCIALIST GOVERNMENT ORGAN

    The Socialist Government speaks:

    THOUGH all the Dead were all forgot
    And razed were every tomb,
    The Worm-the Worm that dieth not
    Compels Us to our doom.
    Though all which once was England stands
    Subservient to Our will,
    The Dead of whom we washed Our hands,
    They have observance still.

    We laid no finger to Their load.
    We multiplied Their woes.
    We used Their dearly-opened road
    To traffic with Their foes:
    And yet to Them men turn their eyes,
    To Them are vows renewed
    Of Faith, Obedience, Sacrifice,
    Honour and Fortitude!

    Which things must perish. But Our hour
    Comes not by staves or swords
    So much as, subtly, through the power
    Of small corroding words.
    No need to make the plot more plain
    By any open thrust;
    But-see Their memory is slain
    Long ere Their bones are dust!

    Wisely, but yearly, filch some wreath-
    Lay some proud rite aside-
    And daily tarnish with Our breath
    The ends for which They died.
    Distract, deride, decry, confuse-
    (Or-if it serves Us-pray!)
    So presently We break the use
    And meaning of Their day!