In tribute to Utahns who have given their lives for their country since World War II, the Utah Fallen Warrior Memorial was dedicated Monday at Fort Douglas, with Gov. Gary Herbert joining other dignitaries in a ceremony built around a piece of the World Trade Center.
Erected at Fort Douglas Military Museum after spending the past month on a statewide tour, the memorial features a 9,000-pound concrete slab from a subterranean "slurry wall" that prevented the Hudson River from flooding ground zero after the twin towers were taken down by airborne terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001, killing more than 2,600 people in New York City.
The concrete block is being purchased by a group known as Utah's Fallen Warrior Memorial, which organized the tour to help raise the $150,000 still needed to buy the piece. Group Executive Director Raette Bloomfield Belcher took on this project after listening at a luncheon to "Gold Star Mothers" who had lost sons in combat since the Gulf War in 1990-91.
Robert Voyles, Fort Douglas Military Museum director, has said the Fallen Warriors Memorial will complement his plans to erect a six-statue monument to Utah women who have been to war. That project also needs $150,000 to be done, but the groundwork is in place for both monuments in a small park behind the museum.
Admission to the museum and park is free, Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m., at 32 Potter St. in Fort Douglas near the University of Utah.
As part of the dedication, the museum's partners in the Foothill Cultural District are offering discounted prices to Gold Star families, members of the military and their families. Those partners include Utah's Hogle Zoo, This Is The Place Heritage Park, Red Butte Garden, the museums of Natural History and Fine Arts, Olympic Cauldron Park, Tracy Aviary and University Guest House Hotel and Conference Center.