Kenai to Hear Presentation on War Memorial

At 7pm tonight, Wednesday, the Kenai City Council will hear a presentation from Bob Myles about the veteran’s memorial in Leif Hansen Memorial Park.


Myles, with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, also spoke Tuesday night at the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting…


Myles: “It is a place that provides us a place to grieve and find inner peace with our memory of those who served and who did not have the opportunity to realize the full potential of their lives and have a chance to live their full dream. Simply put, the memorial was meant to be solely secular in nature. It does not support any religion. It is a lasting memorial to demonstrate our honor and respect to those who have died while protecting our values, our way of life.”


Since the memorial includes a military cross, there have been questions about the separation of church and state.


Commander Nick Nelson with the Alaska Military Order of the Purple Heart said they want all veterans and veteran supporters to turn up…


Nelson: “All the people that we can get to support that. My take on it is get your hands off of it. What are they going to do? The next thing they’re going to do is say we can’t have a flag either?”


A reminder on how the issue first came up – Kenai Vice Mayor Ryan Marquis…


Vice Mayor Marquis: “It started shortly after the memorial was installed last summer. A couple of different constituents approached me and they asked if they city had considered whether the cross that was on the monument could open the City up to a lawsuit challenging its constitutionality. I took the information that they gave me and passed it on to the City Attorney, City Manager for them to assess, explore options. At this point, City Council hasn’t provided any direction to the Administration on it. If it ever is an issue for the Council to decide, it would be put on the agenda, just like anything else we do.”


For more, read: Council Member Says Cross Concerns Came From Public

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