The biggest news in our community in a long time was of course the attack on the World War II Memorial at the entrance to the Sugar Bowl. It was a story that wasn’t just covered by our local newspapers and social media sites, it actually went national as the shock of what happened resonated and angered people all over our country and beyond.
The big questions we asked last week was, who would deface a monument dedicated to the memories of America’s fallen WW II heroes and Why? Yes, who and why indeed. The Who is still being investigated, the Why is anyone’s guess but most are betting it was to send a twisted and perverted political message of protest. Hopefully, at some point soon, those responsible will be caught and dealt with appropriately. Enough said on that until the time arrives.
The attack on the memorial was a terrible thing, but as has been noted by many, something positive often comes with the negative and the way this incident has galvanized the South Boston Community and supporters from beyond our borders far and wide, is something truly heartwarming. And here’s an update on the way the folks have rallied to the cause and the progress made so far with the restoration efforts.
There has been no shortage of volunteers offering to help in whatever way they can to help clean and repair the damage and even to stand guard around the clock to prevent another attempt at vandalism. People have offered to donate security cameras and/or money to purchase them. Concerned citizens with ideas and suggestions, many of them good ones, some not so much, but the thought is appreciated just the same on what products, tools and machines would work best are continuing to step up and offer their knowledge and labor and even to purchase on their own, whatever is needed.
Our local school children, first among them were the kids from the Perry Elementary School are learning valuable history lessons about the sacrifices America’s veterans, throughout our nation’s history have made on behalf of all of us. And an overall reinforcement of the patriotism that runs so strong and so deep in the hearts and souls of South Bostonians has occurred.
The agencies that serve the public have combined to rectify the situation and are working to restore the monument to its original beauty. And it’s quite a lineup of resources. The National Park’s Service, DCR, City of Boston, MBTA, Massport are working together in the effort. Private companies, among them Ralph Morgan and Waldo Brothers have been on site with equipment and products that should get the job done. The original architect and designer Robert Shurer has also been there helping out. Our elected officials have been working hard to bring in additional resources. In fact, State Representative David Biele has been spending hours on end at the site to monitor the progress and the positive report is that progress is definitely being made. Biele said it’s so nice to see how what had happened has galvanized the community.
There is a substance called ‘Poultice’, brought in by Waldo Brothers, that seems to be working. It has been applied to sections of the monument. It needs to be done by a slow and methodical process and has produced promising results. Other substances have been tried with little to no effect, but the Poultice looks like it might do the trick. The oil stains on the granite surface had been absorbed in deep, so getting it out takes time, the right temperature, patience and of course the Poultice. The fact that it is working is encouraging news.
So that’s where it stands so far. The job is getting done, the effort is a priority and with hard work, the expertise of the professionals on board and the efforts and concern of a determined neighborhood, success is in the future. As more than one resident has said – ‘failure is not an option, we will have our monument back the way it was’. South Boston Today will continue to work in cooperation with all the other neighborhood sources of information to keep the public informed as the restoration process continues and of course on any news about the investigation into who was responsible for the vandalism.