Iraq, Afghanistan conflicts to be added to Silver Creek memorial

OBSERVER Photo by Damian Sebouhian The war monument at Silver Creek’s Village Park. The Silver Creek Hanover Garden Club recently received permission from the village to add two more engravings to the monument memorializing the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

SILVER CREEK — The Silver Creek village board approved a resolution during a recent meeting, granting permission to the Silver Creek Hanover Garden Club to add the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts to the veteran’s monument in Village Park.

“Several people approached me over the last few years and felt that it was important to add these two conflicts to the monument just because there are so many of our veterans who have lost their lives over there,” said Garden Club president Ed Newman. “Our monument in the village now has room on the bottom to add those two words ‘Iraq’ and ‘Afghanistan’ the same size letters (as Vietnam), so it would look very appropriate for the rest of the veterans.”

Newman said that the Garden Club has been regularly maintaining the monument throughout the years, and felt it was appropriate for the organization to get the ball rolling on adding the two ongoing conflicts to the monument.

“Each year the garden club does something to donate,” Newman said. “We donate to the library, the emergency squad and so on. So we thought this year we’d donate money to have this engraving done. We talked with the veterans and (they) felt it was high time that this happened.”

Newman said that memorializing usually occurs well after the respective conflicts and wars are over, but because the conflicts in Afghanistan (since 2001) and Iraq (since 2003) have been going on for so long, and because many other municipalities around the country are doing so, it was time to add those wars to the monument.

The wars currently represented on the monument include: Korea, Vietnam, Grenada and the Persian Gulf War. Inscribed above that list of wars are the following words: “Dedicated to the men and women of the Town of Hanover who served their country in war and in loving memory of those who made the supreme sacrifice in World Wars I and II.”

With the blessings of local veterans and permission of the village, Newman said “We’re prepared to move ahead. We have contacted the engraver to go ahead as soon as he can. I hope it happens while the weather is still good.”

Since 2001, 1,695 soldiers have died in the war in and around Afghanistan, while 4,474 have been killed in the Iraq war.

Roughly 2 million U.S. troops have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. More than one million are now eligible for VA services with 600,000 veterans having already been treated at veteran medical facilities.