Thursday, December 6, 2007

Blue Star Memorial Highway Rededication Honors Veterans

"Blue Star Memorial Highway Rededication Honors Veterans
-- Sunday a Blue Star Memorial Highway Marker was unveiled on Highway 51 in Rothschild.In 1950 the first Blue Star Memorial Highway Marker in Wisconsin was put on Highway 51 in Rothschild. "It was just down the street here a couple of blocks and then the state moved it out to the highway and then it was taken down and so many people missed it," says Joseph Kelbley, a Vietnam Veteran and Quartermaster of VFW Post 8895 in Rothschild, Scofield and Weston.
But Veterans Day, a day to honor and remember the men and women who have served our country, was the perfect day to rededicate the Blue Star Memorial Highway. A tribute to the Nation's Armed Forces who served in World War II. "I've lost four of our World War II Veterans in the last year and when I realized that these men are dying and we didn't have a monument here for them we're hoping that this will take the place of a primitive marker," says Kelbley. While the Blue Star Memorial Highway is a tribute to World War II veterans, a second plaque was up in the garden to honor all veterans of all wars. "Today is a very emotional day. It's extremely hard but its very sobering because you see what has become its so good to see the community come together," says Jessica Maple, an Afghanistan Veteran. A community who helped Joseph Kelbley and Jessica Maple raise $30,000 for this project. Since last spring the two have been going around to local organizations and individuals asking for donations. "It ended up being more successful than we anticipated and because of the success we want to keep the project going," says Maple. They are hoping to add bronze statues and expand the garden for future generations to enjoy."

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