Greenfield mayor guest of honor at veterans’ meal

  • Mayor Roxann Wedegartner speaks at a free lunch for veterans at the Greenfield Elks Lodge on Thursday. STAFF PHOTO/MAX MARCUS

  • The fence in front of the memorial at Veterans Memorial Field is set to be removed, per orders from Mayor Roxann Wedegartner. STAFF PHOTO/MAX MARCUS

Staff Writer
Published: 2/13/2020 10:27:51 PM
Modified: 2/13/2020 10:27:40 PM

GREENFIELD — A fence blocking a memorial site on Silver Street is set to be removed or at least modified to allow people to visit it.

Mayor Roxann Wedegartner shared the news while speaking at a free lunch for veterans hosted Thursday at the Greenfield Elks Lodge.

Wedegartner had been invited to speak at the lunch to recognize the “changing of the guard” of her taking office this January, succeeding William Martin’s 10-year tenure, said Chad Wright, the associate director of Building Bridges, the organization that coordinates the weekly veterans’ lunches.

The memorial is a stone marker about the size of a gravestone, in front of a small hedge and a tree, which faces Silver Street from behind the Veterans Memorial Field. The fence has been there as long as anyone at City Hall can remember; Wedegartner guessed it was put up at least 15 or 20 years ago, probably to prevent vandalism.

But it also prevents people from accessing the memorial directly from the sidewalk, Wedegartner said. She added that she personally dislikes the fence.

“I think it’s ugly,” she said.

Since taking office in January, she has spoken to Department of Public Works Director Marlo Warner about removing the fence, she said.

“It seemed like something that, if I say so, it should happen,” she said.

The DPW will address the problem when weather and time permit, she added.

The Elks Lodge’s veterans lunches are every Thursday from noon to 1:30 p.m. They are coordinated by Building Bridges, an organization sponsored by the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts, which coordinates similar lunches at nine sites throughout Western Massachusetts, according to Wright. He said the lunches are open to anyone who has served at least one day in the armed services and a guest.

Reach Max Marcus at
mmarcus@recorder.com
or 413-930-4231.


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