HARTINGTON — Veterans Day was the appropriate day and The Historic Hartington Hotel was the fitting site for the official transfer of land donated by Ben and Erin Schroeder to the Hartington VFW for a new veterans’ memorial here.
The land, located on the southeast corner of State and Broadway, will be the home of the new Hartington Area Veterans Memorial.
“The veterans and what they stand for is something near and dear to our hearts and seeing the eventual completed veterans’ memorial just outside the window of the hotel is something really special and Ben and I are so looking forward to its completion within the next couple of years,” Erin Schroeder said. “In reality, this land donation is but a small part of the big picture when considering all the sacrifices our veterans have made for the freedom we enjoy today.”
Ben echoed Erin’s comments.
“There are a number of very nice veteran memorials going up in northeast Nebraska to honor our veterans and we are happy to see our own Hartington veterans’ memorial come about. Erin and I are glad we could play a small part in helping to get a veterans memorial started in Hartington,” he said.
There has been talk of building a veterans’ memorial in Hartington for the past 10 years or so but the hold-up seemed to be mainly due to not having the proper site to build a memorial.
“That all changed when Ben and Erin approached me to get my thoughts about the location for a veterans’ memorial on their empty lot and my immediate thought was it was a perfect location in downtown Hartington, where it would not be out of site or mind.” said Dan Kathol, who agreed to be the Project Chairman on the new veteran’s memorial.
Since the land had to be donated to an established veteran’s group, it was determined the Hartington VFW would hold the deed and ownership of the land at least through the construction phase of the memorial. The current plan under consideration is that the city of Hartington would take ownership of the veteran’s memorial and land after the completion and dedication of the memorial, which is targeted for Veteran’s Day in November 2021.
“We are accepting the land and deed ownership on behalf of all the three veteran organization and all area veterans as this is a total veteran’s project and not just a VFW project and we want all veterans to be part of it and support it,” says Dean McGregor, Hartington VFW Post 5283 Commander.