GREENVILLE - A new veteran’s memorial was unveiled and dedicated Friday morning in front of Wayne HealthCare.
The new memorial consists of pavers engraved with service personnel’s information that line the memorial’s walkway. There is a water rock, engraved with the Wayne HealthCare logo and flag pole. The flag pole will fly the American, the state, and POW/MIA flags. A plaque is at the base of the flag pole with the emblems of each branch of service.
The memorial was made possible by the Wayne Hospital Foundation, a fundraising organization to do medical and healthcare-related good in the community, said Wayne Deschambeau, President/CEO of Wayne HealthCare.
“The foundation is all about doing good for the community,” said Deschambeau during the introduction.
Foundation Co-Chair, Aaron Cox emceed the event and told of how the memorial came to be. In May 2013, board member Dave Furlong suggested the idea of the memorial. Furlong, also the president of Fitzwater Tree and Lawn Care, donated the water rock and the labor to construct the project.
“I would like to thank you for making this possible and for this great tribute to our veterans,” said Cox of Furlong’s generosity.
The American Legion Post 140 presented the flag while Greenville High School senior Brooke Netzley sang the national anthem. State Rep. Jim Buchy and Sen. Keith Faber presented an Ohio flag.
“I think its very special that we are here today to dedicate this memorial. In the history of our country over 41 million men and women have worn a uniform…1,300,000 plus have died in battle defending freedom - 66,000 fellow Buckeyes have been killed fighting for our freedom. So I think it’s very appropriate, it’s very special today that we thank those here at Wayne HealthCare, the foundation, the Furlough family and Fitzwater’s,” said State Rep. Jim Buchy.
A certificate of recognition was presented by Greenville Mayor Mike Bowers.
“I’ve very proud of this community, I’m very proud of the gentlemen that you see here today, the sacrifice they’ve made- the service they’ve given to their country so we may have the freedom that we have in this country, in this state and in this community,” said Bowers.
Darke County Commissioners Mike Stegall, also a Foundation Board member, and Diane Deleplane presented a proclamation. Delaplane spoke of how important it was to recognize our veterans and of the continued good work of the foundation.
“John Wayne was once asked what’s the definition of courage - he thought about it for a moment and then he said ‘courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyways.’ These gentlemen before you, they saddled up when their country called. There is no braver, no higher honor then serving your country,” said Stegall.
Furlong said the memorial took about five days to install.
“I’ve done a lot of projects…probably this project here has given me more joy. This monument here and this stone is dedicated to guys that have served so I can walk around in this country free so it’s a small token,” said Furlong. “They gave all I gave nothing.”
Veteran Floyd E. Foureman unveiled the plaque placed in front of the flag pole. Foureman was the first employee of Fitzwater Tree and Lawn Care which began in 1946.
Other veterans in attendance were Dale Marker, Carl Wetzel, Clark Lease, Tom McGee and Donald Newbauer, who are members of the Disabled American Veterans (DAV), Veteran’s of Foreign Affairs (VFW) and American Legion Post 140.
Other Foundation Board members are Lynne Hawley, M.D., chairman; Karen Nichols, secretary; Bob Nelson, Mike Henry, Tracy Haines, Krista Subler, Marvella Fletcher, Holly Hill, Donna Harter and Phil Dubbs.
The Wayne Hospital Foundation was established to acquire and accept charitable gifts for Wayne Hospital, now Wayne HealthCare, in order to perpetuate and advance the highest quality of health care services at Wayne HealthCare and in Darke County.
The Foundation’s Mission, simply put, is to assist Wayne HealthCare with extending the gift of life to all those in need, regardless of their ability to pay.
The Foundation is a separate, non-profit corporation, which is governed by a volunteer board of Directors, each of whom is a recognized leader in the communities Wayne HealthCare serves. The members donate their time, talents, expertise, insights, and financial support. Board members are responsible for ensuring the Foundation is an efficient, cost-effective organization that is fully accountable for the philanthropic funds entrusted to it.