BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — It’s an expression of gratitude, long overdue. It’s been more than a year since a group of local veterans launched efforts to build a World War Two memorial in downtown Bakersfield. Now, they’re asking for your help to fund the project. Local experts say more than 600 people from Kern County gave their lives in World War II. Local veteran Ed Gaede works with a nonprofit shining a light on these military heroes.
“We have a Korean Memorial, we have a Vietnam memorial, but we do not have a World War II memorial,” said Gaede, President of the Kern County World War II Veterans Memorial. “We want to get this built sooner than later, because we’re losing these World War II veterans at a phenomenal rate due to their age.”
The committee plans to build the memorial in Jastro Park, next to a Korean War monument. The Bakersfield City Council gave the green light for the project in September.
“On the front of those pieces will be the 684 names of Kern County veterans who died in service to our country,” said Gaede. “Smaller black pieces will be honoring those who supported the war effort.”
Gaede says his nonprofit needs your help raising money for the monument, to honor these veterans before they pass away.
“We’re offering an opportunity for our community to help us build this World War II memorial by them sponsoring a living or deceased Kern County veteran’s name, to have those names engraved on the reverse side of these black granite pieces,” said Gaede.
Committee members say the project has a $500,000 price tag, and they plan to complete it by Veteran’s Day next year. If you want to donate, you can click this link.