The Kenton County Veterans Memorial was conceived in November of 1994. A remark from Obie Henderson regarding the scarcity of veteran memorials in the area prompted Lou Hartfiel to investigate. Lou, at that time a Crescent Springs City Councilman, discovered that there were indeed very few of them in Greater Cincinnati.
Bringing the suggestion of creating such a memorial to City Council, Lou gained support and approval from the council and Mayor George Stewart - but the city had no way to allocate any funding at the time.
Lou found a piece of property near Western Reserve and Anderson Road which was owned by the railroad and solicited and gained their permission to erect a memorial there. He then raised a committee of area veterans for the purpose of designing it and raising the necessary money to build it.
The charter members of the Kenton County Veterans Memorial Committee were:
A fundraising program was devised to permit the memorial to be built without the use of tax money. Commemorative paver bricks were sold and, with the donations and support from the public and local businesses, the committee raised $32,000 within ten months - about $10,000 short of the goal. In order to meet the Veterans Day 1995 dedication ceremony, the City of Crescent Springs offered a loan to reach the amount required. It took seven years to repay the loan and maintain the Memorial through various fundraising projects.
The location on the railroad property proved to be far from adequate as a site for the Memorial. Passing train noise was a problem during ceremonial events and the reverse side of the granite list of names was hardly visible. When it became feasible,a decision was made to move the Memorial to its current location adjacent to the Community Park at the intersection of Collins Road and Buttermilk Pike. The project, including move and new site development, would amoun to $30,000 - and a new fundraising effort became necessary.
This time, the City of Crescent Springs provided $5,800 and Kenton County Fiscal Court approved $2,000 towards the project. The remainder of the money was gained from the support of local businesses and fundraisers by the Committee. To date, the new Memorial has been paid off, but further funding for upkeep and repairs continues to be an ongoing issue. (see "Help Out / Participate").
Features are walkways of commemorative pavers purchased to contribute to the Memorial and dedicated to the memory of loved ones, both military as well as non-military and inscribed benches. Pavers are still available and can be purchased at a cost of $45.00.
The Memorial also displays a handsome bronze plaque dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alvin Poweleit who was a survivor of the notorious "Bataan Death March" during World War II in the Philippines.
The Memorial serves as a fitting venue each year for a Memorial Day event where guests meet for a ceremonial tribute to American veterans of all wars, both past and contemporary.
The Kenton County Veterans Memorial Committee has been reduced through members leaving the area or having passed on. Today's Committee consists of President Lou Hartfiel, his wife Shirley, son Jeff Hartfiel and members Dave Bowman and Debbie Feighery. At this writing, most of the landscaping and maintenance is graciously provided by the Hartfiel family.
If you would like to share your respect for our men and women who have given all for our country, please consider making a donation of any amount - or setting some time aside to help out as a volunteer worker. You may contact Lou Hartfiel at 341-9144 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Paver Bricks are Still Available! Commemorate a loved one, a meaningful event or just show your support. Your $45 purchase covers the paver, your inscription and placement into the Memorial walkway. All proceeds go directly to the Kenton County Veterans Memorial Fund.
The Northern Kentucky 911 Memorial Project
The Northern Kentucky community will soon display a memorial to the tragic events of September 11th, 2001. The monument will be adjacent to the Veterans Memorial at the City Park.Click below to learn more...
Talk About the KCVM
Come visit the Memorial to pay your respects - then tell others about it. Many people in the area do not even know about it - many who have relatives' names inscribed on the monument. They'll appreciate it. Plus, it's a perfect place to just sit and relax.