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Veteran memorial to move next to Rose Garden

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The Marine Corps League presented the colors at a ceremony to announce that the veteran memorial on the corner of Shaw and Cedar avenues will be moved. Photo Roe Borunda

The veterans memorial on the corner of Cedar and Shaw avenues will be relocated to just east of the Rose Garden, joining other memorials in that area of campus.

The plan to move the monument was announced in a ceremony Wednesday at the Maple Mall.  It will be moved to the grass area between the two flagpoles east of the Rose Garden.

Tom Gaffery, Facilities Operations manager, said the new setup will also include landscaping and accent lighting.  A World War I memorial plaque in the Rose Garden will be moved next to the monument as well to better draw attention to its dedication.

“We consulted the veterans community on campus and in the surrounding community about where to place the monument,” Gaffery said.  “Its location connects the monument to other memorials on campus.”

He said the monument could be in place by the end of the calendar year.

Gaffery said the project will go up for bid soon, which means the university will solicit proposals from construction firms to do the work.

Congressman Jim Costa was in attendance and spoke about the impact of veterans in the area.

Costa urged everyone to go up to veterans they meet and say, “Thank you.” He said the monument was an important visual reminder for passersby.

“I think it’s overdue that we move the monument here to a more fitting location,” Costa said. “Students will be able to see it and recognize the sacrifices that were made.”

For some students, it could be the first time they see the monument and memorial to Fresno State veterans.

“Moving the monument is a great idea,” said Student Veteran Organization president Miguel Saldana. “I am really grateful because I had no idea it was a veterans memorial.”

Councilmember Blong Xiong officially recognized the work of the student organization during the ceremony with a certificate. He also addressed the veterans in attendance.

“All of us can identify with veterans from different eras,” Xiong said.  “My community is tied to Vietnam War veterans. As I grew up in this country, I know why they fought.”

Gaffery said the monument also needed to move to make room for new signage on campus.

New way-finding signage is planned for the monument’s current location.