Veterans Memorial Dedication

Windham’s Veterans Memorial on the Town Common 

The Town Common Beautification Committee is focusing on the development of a Veterans Memorial section on the Windham Town Common. The Committee is restoring the area that was established in 1985 that honors Veterans.

We sold Honoree Paver's that are part of the paver pattern that created a hardscape area encompassing the existing 1985 Memorial, the flagpole, the fire pit, and the new memorial that went in this fall by an Eagle Scout.

A dedication ceremony was held on Friday, November 16, 2018 to unveil the area and to thank everyone who supported the project.

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Windham is a community of many positives, not the least of which is our unwavering respect for our veterans - both past and present - and our desire to express our support of their service and sacrifice through projects such as this.

As I walked through here a few days ago, after the final paver was laid, I recognized several names among those inscribed – individuals I have had the honor of meeting or working with in my years here as Town Administrator. Individuals who I respect not only for their service to our country, but to our community, as well.

  • NH State Representative Walter Kolodziej
  • Long-time volunteer and van driver Dennis Root
  • Rex Norman our Community Development Director, whose son Alex now serves in the Army
  • Samantha and Adam Letizio, both on currently on active duty, who are the children of Al and Patti who have contributed so much to Windham
  • Chuck Nickles, our Legion Post Commander, to whom I wish a speedy recovery
  • Frank Keefe, who at 17 dropped out of high school to join the US Navy and, in later years, served the residents as an employee of Windham for a total of 30 years

Over the years, throughout Town, similar dedications have taken place – in the Town Museum where marble plaques list the names of those brave Windham-ites who fought to maintain our freedom in WWII, Vietnam and more; in the Cemetery on the Plain, where the family of Wilbur Tarbell erected an iron arch in his memory when he did not return from service on the lost USS Scorpion. Nearby that gate, in 1992, the Veterans Section was dedicated.

And here on this very spot in 1985, Jim Curtin – grandfather of Rourke Curtin whose Eagle Scout project was this new monument to the Armed Forces – along with his fellow Legion members and the Windham Woman’s Club dedicated this Common to our veterans. So, in a way, we’ve come full circle here as their efforts, along with Rourke’s, and Willem Shattuck’s fire pit have unified this small corner of Windham into a beautifully cohesive, symbolic representation of our appreciation and support for those brave individuals who serve in our Armed Forces - and for their families.

President Truman said: “Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices.” This area, these monuments we have created, are but small tokens of Windham’s gratitude; but hopefully they will serve to remind generations to come that freedom is, indeed, not free.

There are many who came together to make this possible that deserve our thanks:

Eagle Scouts Rourke Curtin and Willem Shattuck, along with their fellow scouts, leaders, and parents who aided in completing their projects

My fellow members of the Town Common Beautification subcommittee Kathleen DiFruscia, Frank Farmer, Peter Griffin, and Siri WILBUR. Special thanks to our former Chair Maureen Spooner without whose tireless dedication we might not be here today, and to Parks & Recreation Director Cheryl Haas whose coordination and oversight was – as it always is – invaluable.

The members of the Board of Selectmen – particularly Jennifer Simmons and Joel Desilets who served as liaison to the Committee

Windham Outdoor Materials for bringing the pavers together into this beautiful patio

And last, but certainly not least, the Windham residents, employees and organizations who made donations, purchased pavers and benches (the bench plaques are coming soon!), or rolled up your sleeves on clean-up days