A fallen soldier memorial leaves the Village Council concerned, specifically because the gun in the statue is inappropriate for the park.
Friends of American Veterans submitted a proposal to complete their Veterans Memorial at the Central Park in Milford, Michigan. However, the group has not received approval specifically because the monument features an M-16 rifle that is viewed as too inappropriate for the park.
The current plan for the Veteran's Memorial is to feature an eight-foot-tall battlefield cross, which includes combat boots, an M-16 rifle, a helmet, and dog tags, at the front entrance to the park.
Village manager Christian Wuerth claims that the council understands the meaning of the monument, but doesn't think it belongs there, as reported by Detroit Free Press.
"There was some concern from a couple of members regarding the specific memorial that's proposed," said Wuerth. "Specifically, the gun. They understood the history of (the memorial) and the meaning of it, they just didn't feel it was appropriate for that specific location."
Though some council members are uneasy with the idea of displaying a statue of a military weapon in their park, Councilwoman Jennifer Frankford believes that we wouldn't have the freedoms we have today if it weren't for the boots, the gun, and the helmet.
Frankford alongside with Bear Hall, founder of the FAV and Korean War veteran, have raised over $12,000 is three months to help fund the construction of the memorial. Veterans who donated are furious and are asking why someone who gave their life to protect and serve this country shouldn't be remembered.
"The level of opposition is disappointing for one, but the thing that really bothers me is most of the council have never served," Hall said. "Why do they have the right to tell me what can go here? They're not veterans."
The battlefield cross is not a new design. It has been used by those in active duty as far back as the Civil War to honor and memorialize soldiers who have fallen fighting for our freedom.
"If people are worried about their kids seeing a gun, take away their video games... don't let them hunt," Ron Nevorski, another Friends of American Veterans member told the Free Press.
The proposal will be revisited by the council on April 20, to which Hall plans to bring a lot of people.
"We're not giving up. We're going to fight it," Nevorski said. "Marines don't give up anyways."