MUSKEGON – A Modern War Monument honoring four Muskegon County soldiers who died since Operation Desert Storm which morphed into the “Global War on Terrorism” (2001 to present) has been placed at the north end of Veterans Memorial Park on the Causeway Memorial Drive.
A dedication ceremony for the Modern War Monument was held on Friday, June 14, in honor of Muskegon County’s fallen, no matter what country they were deployed in.
Mike Baauw, USN Retired, director of the Muskegon Veteran Center along with the former director, Dave Eling, USAF Ret. presented photos of the monument to the families of Army SPC Anthony O. Cardinal, Army SGT. Todd A. Singleton, Army SPC Daniel E. Scheibner, and Army CPL. Jason T. Lee, whose names are on the memorial. Chaplain Wes Spyke, USN Retired, gave the prayer.
The design of the new Modern Warrior Monument was inspired by Nancy Ann Giddings Beeman. Christine Boukamp from Muskegon Monument was a consultant.
The monument is made of 1,779 pounds of jet black granite.
In the design, the folded flag symbolizes — Modern Warrior’s sacrifice. In the center is the shape of Muskegon County.
The star on left signifies Muskegon County residents, and included are the emblems U.S. Military Branches of Service.
Names of the fallen are on the monument, which has additional space for names of future fallen warriors which hopefully will remain blank.
Inscribed on the monument are the words, “Their Pledge To God And Country is Complete. We Honor Their Sacrfices For Our Freedom.”
Four pennies have been embedded inside the monument layers as a remembrance.
Modern Warrior Committee members who are responsible for the monument are: Nancy and Tom Beeman, Dave Eling, Wes and Lil Spyke, John and Cathy Casazza. Residents of Muskegon County provided donations, prayers and patriotism. Also a part of the project are: Superior Monument, Community Foundation for Muskegon County, Muskegon County Dept. of Veterans Affairs, Muskegon County Dept. of Public Works, Muskegon County Commisioners and West Michigan Veterans Inc.