Park name shouldn’t be controversial

The veterans memorial should be just that. With everyone jumping in, it is getting watered down. Here are some points to ponder:

1. Not only is a veterans memorial the right thing to do, but it can be a tourist destination that can reach far beyond a neighborhood, city or even county.

2. If I was a tourist that didn’t have any idea what the memorial was about but heard the name as a neighborhood garden veterans memorial, I’d think, “Oooh a garden society put a flag pole in their radish patch or gladiola bed and decided that was a veterans memorial.” Even if I got to the farmers market, would that draw me down past the power station to the hidden memorial?

3. If the neighborhood isn’t a major contributor or controller, why their name on it?

4. Here’s a possible solution to make everyone happy. Why hide the memorial behind a power station? Let the garden stay. Why not use the veterans memorial as a stepping stone to bring tourists downtown?

I don’t know what the triangle area at the entrance of the Lake View Cemetery at the intersection of Cameron and Buffington Drive is designated for. But if the memorial could be located there, visitors to it could view the memorial with great vistas of Half Moon Lake and Eau Claire spread out in the background. It could entice them to visit downtown. There is room for expansion, maybe to include the peace memorial on its own, an area for parking, maybe the area for gun salutes would be back farther so not to upset neighbors as much, and a chapel for services if needed.

I suggest everyone that donated to the memorial check it out and let your views be heard.

Mark Aebly

Eau Claire

In agreement with L-T columnist

I agree with the viewpoint of Randy Rickman, publisher of the Leader-Telegram, in Sunday’s edition on the naming of the Veterans Tribute Park.

It’s time for the City Council to approve Veterans Tribute Park as soon as possible. The plans and advertising have been in all forms of the media for months.

Do the groups who raised an objection after the 60-day public comment period closed not feel honored to be included in the design? If you were a neighbor, wouldn’t you feel pride in what a wonderful addition this is to your neighborhood and how honored you are that they sacrificed everything so you have the freedoms you so cherish?

The inclusion of the gardens will reflect life and will enhance the experience of visiting this peaceful park. If the City Council cannot accept the purpose of this park and the commitment of the veterans who have followed all the guidelines presented to them, what does it say about their commitment to all veterans in the community?

The path to those stones means something different to every man, woman and child who will walk there. There should be no controversy here — only an honorable commitment to those who served and to those we lost.

Connie Luer

Chippewa Falls

Park construction scheduled to begin

After having read an article today wherein one Randy Rickman seems to bypass the truth and directly insinuate Brandon Buchanan as acting nefariously, I definitely have concerns regarding Rickman’s moral compass and overall agenda.

I am also worried for the paper as a whole. News should be fair and unbiased. It doesn’t seem Rickman communicated with Buchanan to try to be either of those things, unfortunately.

Furthermore, Rickman should know that the veterans trail project was unanimously approved months ago by the City Council. Construction is slated to begin quite soon. Knowing this, I’m not sure what he meant when he said (paraphrasing) that it’s time for the council to approve the park so construction can begin. Again, the project was already approved and construction is slated to start next month.

Finally, with $450,000 of public money having been contributed by the council for this project, and a memorandum of understanding in place, I’m really surprised there wasn’t a thank you thrown their way instead. Sadly it seems to be all shade and accelerant.

My suggestion is a retraction and an apology. Seriously.

Sadie Polttila


Many responses to column predicted

I read a column published in your paper (online actually) that ripped into County Board Supervisor Brandon Buchanan for his role in the renaming or should I say not renaming of the community garden and park in Eau Claire.

This editorial was rude, crude and not based in fact. Everyone had a chance to speak on this issue. Sixty days, in fact. They did not. Brandon did his homework, spoke publicly and stood up for the entire community, including our valued veterans.

Rescind this terrible column. Better yet, post the responses you get to it this week. There will be many.

Thank you for your attention.

Nancy Hetzel

Eau Claire