Fundraising continues for planned memorial at Greenwood Cemetery

February 28, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

A local veteran’s quest to have a memorial placed at Greenwood Cemetery in Orangeville has hit a snag in the funding stage, but the plan to erect a 15-foot wide black granite monument at the entrance to the cemetery is still in place.

Former Orangeville Legion president, Chris Skalozub already has a detailed plan of the monument that he designed himself, including a small granite sketch of the relief that will be etched onto the face of the slab. 

The design has a maple leaf in the style used during the world wars, and the Legion’s Act of Remembrance inscribed on the face of the granite.

The project came to a standstill when the requested funding for the memorial was apparently never approved, after Skalozub approached the Town about receiving $30,000 that the municipality allots as grants to various institutions through the year.

According to Skalozub, he approached the Town asking for the $30,000 and was told it was approved.

“I asked for a $30,000 grant for a memorial at Greenwood Cemetery from Town council,” Skalozub said. “I thought it was approved because (former) mayor Jeremy Williams told me it was.”

After a new Town council and mayor were installed following recent municipal elections, he again approached the Town only to find that no one knew anything about the request.

“When I went to council, I find out I was turned down, “Skalozub said. “No one knew anything about it. I went back to council and asked to talk to the new mayor. It’s about time the Town had something to memorialize veterans and Greenwood is the Town’s cemetery.”

The Town does have funds set aside for local grants, however, rarely, if ever, are funds given to one organization only. Usually the funds are allotted to several groups based on an established criteria.

Skalozub has been involved in creating two other veteran monuments in town – one at Forest Lawn Cemetery and also one at the Royal Canadian Legion.

According to Skalozub, the Town took his request into consideration and gave him $5,000 towards the monument.

“After I was told ‘no’, I was finally given $5,000 from the Town,” he said. “I got $10,000 from the Legion and $2,000 from the Legion’s Ladies Auxiliary.”

The Royal Canadian Legion raises funds from it’s annual Poppy Campaign.

Skalozub said he plans to continue fundraising until he gets the full amount needed to build the monument. He said the plan is to place the black granite slab at the entrance to the cemetery just off Veterans Way, where it will be seen by everyone who passes by.

Anyone who wants to contribute to the effort can make a donation to the Monuments and Restoration Fund at the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 233 in Orangeville.

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