WEST ROCKHILL — "Phenomenal."
That's how West Rockhill Township Park & Recreation Committee Chairman David Reiss described the Nov. 8 dedication ceremony for the newly added names to the township's Veteran's Memorial.
"It was just a huge day, beautiful," Reiss summed up during his report at the Nov. 18 West Rockhill Township Board of Supervisors meeting. "Everybody loved it and it was just phenomenal."
Started in 2005 with 391 names, the memorial in James Memorial Park on Ridge Road now has 74 more names added this year.
Speakers at this year's ceremony included former state Rep. Paul Clymer, who is a West Rockhill resident, U.S. Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick, R-1, and Charlie Guenst, Allyn Grubb and Fred Diseroad, who led the creation of the memorial and guided this year's additions.
Diseroad, an architect and former township supervisor, said there is a lot of symbolism in the design of the memorial, including the use of boulders, which represent the foundation of the township.
"We said that we were going to recognize every person by name. You'll see a lot of plaques where they say, 'In memory of all the veterans,'" he said. "We wanted to go a bit farther and we mentioned everybody's name."
The plaques also include the veterans' rank, branch of service and dates of service.
"The dedication ceremony was phenomenal," Reiss said. "Everything that went on that day, from the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, the bugler, the American Legion Post that was out there, the quartet that was there, Park & Rec members that aided, Fred, Charlie, Allyn."
The newly-added names were also read aloud at the ceremony, which was attended by several of the veterans.
The ceremony was live-streamed and the video has been posted online, Reiss said. The video and additional information about the Veteran's Memorial is in the Veteran's Memorial section of Parks & Events on the township website at www.westrockhilltownship.org. The video is also on YouTube.
Reiss said he asked Fitzpatrick about ways to commemorate the memorial and Fitzpatrick suggested that a presentation be put together that could be added to the national archives.
"I'm gonna work with him to make that happen," Reiss said.