Purp's Patriot Park was dedicated this past Veteran's Day, November 11, 2017. As many of you know, the dedication service was held here at One Hot Cookie and Purp's Patriot Park. Over 200 people attended. Veterans, friends, and family gathered to listen to stories and speeches about honoring Veterans. The cold weather stopped no one! With a table filled with hot chocolate, coffee, and apple cider, the One Hot Cookie Staff was happy to keep spirits warm! Thanks to At Your Service Transportation and Party Bus Co. who provided visitors with a shuttle bus service from the Carruthers School parking lot to the park. Thank you to Bob Mach for parking assistance.
The ceremony began with prayer, Pledge of Allegiance, and The National Anthem. We invited anyone who wanted to honor a veteran to fill out a form with their name, branch, and time of service so we could paint a rock with this information to be placed in the park. We laid over 250 rocks that day and are excited to be getting more names submitted. The names of the Veterans were read by Dana Lavender-Stites, Lance Stratton, Sierra Stratton-Hardt, Amanda Byasse-Gott, and Mason Schingel. The stones were laid by the children and grandchildren of the Veterans. Children of the community also helped in the placement of rocks guided by Sarah Lavender-Brashear and Robin Lavender-Mach. We'd also like to thank the One Hot Cookie Bakery & Catering Staff for taking the time to prepare and place these memorial stones!
The service could not have gone better. There were speakers, singers, and many people working behind the scenes to help the dedication go over without a hitch. We would like to thank all of the speakers for their amazing work at the dedication: Craig Brashear, Aaron Boyd, Stacy Reed, Frank Knowski, Julie Wittenborn-Skorski, Carol Knowski, Kevin Stratton, Bruce Dallas, Kin Lavender, Stephanie Finke, and Mason Schingel. We'd also like to thank our two singers, Kateena Leforg and Shelby Sites Taylor. Also a thank you to Perry Murray, from the Illinois Vietnam Veteran Memorial Committee, for his letter. We'd also like to pass along a very special thank you to the American Legion Post 127 Colorguard for coming to do the 21 Gun Salute as well as TAPS. Your service is greatly appreciated!
Thank you to all of those who attended and assisted with this ceremony, and thank you to all Veterans for their service. You are greatly appreciated and respected! It was an honor to have some of Purp's "Band of Brothers" from the 1"CAV"A" Co attend. Attending were Frank and Carol Knowski, Doug and Diane Sharp, Cal and Bonnie Gilbertson, and Dene Debauch. Thank you to Scott Wheeler for the bonfire during lunch, which provided an opportunity to reminisce while roasting marshmallows!