State grants Edmonds veterans memorial $77K, $25K still needed

EDMONDS — The drive to build a 5,500-square-foot memorial park to honor veterans has gotten a big boost — a $77,000 grant from the state.

Plans now call for construction to begin in June and for the memorial park to be dedicated Nov. 11, Veterans Day, said Ron Clyborne, who helped launch the drive for the park.

“We’re absolutely thrilled,” Clyborne said of the state donation.

The fundraising effort is still about $25,000 short of its $420,000 goal. Clyborne said he’s confident that the public will continue to respond. The group is offering pavers, plaques and seating cubes for sale, on which people can have a name engraved to honor a veteran or someone serving in the military. Anyone donating $1,000 or more will have their name included on a donor wall in a memorial garden.

Clyborne said that the $77,000 received from the state was the second biggest single donation the group has received for creation of the plaza. State Rep. Strom Peterson, D-Edmonds, worked with Sen. Marko Liias, D-Lynnwood, to secure the state money.

The plaza will be an area that’s not only important to veterans but to the people who haven’t served in the military, Peterson said. “Getting this thing started has been an exciting process and one the community has really gotten behind.”

The largest donation, $180,000, came from the Hazel Miller Foundation, which helps fund projcts in Edmonds and south Snohomish County.

Clyborne announced plans for the downtown plaza to honor veterans early last year. The memorial park will be sited on the grounds of the city’s Public Safety building at 121 5th Ave.

Plans for the plaza have been modified to create more of a park-like setting, Clyborne said. It will have more seating, a waterfalls and a memorial garden. “It will be absolutely spectacular,” he said.

The plaza also will include an information center to provide resources to veterans and their families.

“It will be a place for our veterans to come and heal and the community as a whole to come together and perhaps have a little greater understanding of one another,” Clyborne said.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486; salyer@heraldnet.com.

Pavers, plaques, and seating cubes to honor a veteran in Edmonds Veterans Plaza are now on sale. Contributors of $1,000 or more will be recognized on a donor wall in the plaza’s memorial garden. More information on the project is available at edmondsveteransplaza.com/media/. Donations may be made online or by sending checks to Edmonds Veterans Plaza, c/o Edmonds VFW Post 870, PO Box 701, Edmonds, WA 98020.

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