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Every vet will have his day in CK

An architect’s rendering of what the proposed veteran’s memorial would look like along the eastern edge of Silverdale’s Waterfront Park at the far end of Byron Street. - Drawing courtesy of Doug Maraist, Fjord Architects, Poulsbo
An architect’s rendering of what the proposed veteran’s memorial would look like along the eastern edge of Silverdale’s Waterfront Park at the far end of Byron Street.
— image credit: Drawing courtesy of Doug Maraist, Fjord Architects, Poulsbo

Delayed, but not forgotten, a veteran’s memorial planned for Central Kitsap is back on track.

And it’s a fast one at that.

On Nov. 11 the Veteran’s Memorial, set to go in Silverdale’s Waterfront Park, is expected to be dedicated.

“It’s gonna happen,” said John Armstrong, president for the Home Builders Association of Kitsap County — one of two organizations spearheading the project.

The memorial was designed by Doug Maraist of Fjord Architects in Poulsbo.

For about a year Silverdale Sunrise Rotary and the Home Builders Association have been working on a memorial, but the proposed locations fell through. It was initially scheduled to break ground last year at a park site north of Silverdale. After several near misses, organizers and Kitsap parks officials decided on a spot in Waterfront Park in Old Town.

“It fits the park well and is centrally located,” said Rick Fackler, parks project coordinator for Kitsap County Parks and Recreation. The plan is scheduled to go to the parks planning Open Space and Greenways Advisory Council next week for approval.

One hurdle cleared.

The site has been chosen and the project is “fairly far along” in the permitting process, but the fundraising has yet to officially start Armstrong said.

He was scheduled Thursday to present the memorial’s schematic at the Home Builders Association regular meeting. The association’s philanthropic arm will serve as the contractor for the project.

The budget for the project has not yet been set, but organizers are counting on volunteer labor, donations and grants.

The Veteran’s Memorial will feature a seat wall and a world map with countries of cement stones and oceans of grass. Veterans can talk to their friends and family about where they served and families can contemplate their loved ones abroad.

It will also feature flags honoring each military branch, POWs and MIAs. Displays honoring Washington state and Kitsap military installations are also incorporated into the design.

“The only reason we have freedom is because these people defended it for so many years,” Armstrong said.

Not only that, but Silverdale has been home to the military for several years.

“We just really haven’t done enough to show respect for that community,” Armstrong said.

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