Retired Rear Admiral Herbert M. Bridge, USNR (ret) will deliver the keynote address when the Washington State World War II Memorial is re-dedicated on Tues., Dec. 7, on the state capitol campus in Olympia.
The public is invited to attend this event which will take place in a heated structure next to the memorial which is located between the north diagonal and 11th street on the main campus.
The Washington State American Legion Band, under the direction of Diana Appler, will begin performing at 10:30 a.m. with the ceremony scheduled for 11:00 a.m. Other participants include the National Guard of Washington Honor Guard, Friends of Willie and Joe, the Patriot Guard Riders, and volunteers from the Puget Sound Area USO at McChord will provide hot coffee.
This Memorial — one of the first in the country to honor those who served in World War II — was originally dedicated in 1999.
Earlier this year, all of the donor tiles around the memorial were removed. The lawn area surrounding the memorial was re-graded and significant drainage improvements installed. New donor bricks of the same granite but twice the thickness of the original tiles were created and installed in exactly the same locations. The original donor tiles were crushed and used as base material beneath a new concrete foundation for the band of engraved pavers. Artist Simon Kogan was engaged to work with Fabrication Specialties Ltd. of Seattle to restore the finish of the bronze blades and burnish the ghost images on each. Minor improvements also include repairs to wheat stalks and a new bronze plaque at the seating area for 42 names not included on the memorial itself.
Parking is limited on the Capitol Campus. Consider using off-site parking at the Olympia Farmers Market and the free DASH Shuttle to the Capitol which runs every 15 minutes.
Hourly parking is also available throughout downtown Olympia with access to the DASH shuttle on Capitol Way.
For additional information, contact the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs at (360) 725-2180.