We were lucky enough last fall to find in Cold Spring the same color granite that we’ve been looking for for a number of years that matches the pavers we’ve been using on the Pequot Lakes All Veterans Memorial in Trailside Park.

Since 2006, there have been a number of veterans and their families who requested pavers that we had to turn down because that color was not available. Our inventory of 212 pavers ran out in the fall of 2006.

Acting on a tip I received last fall, I found white granite. I called Pat Kiffmeyer at Lake Country Granite in Pequot Lakes. He made the call to Cold Spring and negotiated a great price for American Legion Post #49. (Reading between the lines, I’m sure the people in Cold Spring treated us very well also).

Pat then paid the freight to get the granite slab up here, where he and his crew cut the pavers at no cost to the Legion post, as Bob Murphy (Clearwater Stone) did in 2006.

Early this spring, I talked to Bob and Billy Rickard of Rickard & Sons Concrete & Masonry in Pequot Lakes about plans to update our veterans memorial walkway now that we had a new supply of pavers available to the vets and their families. We’ve updated the walkway with a raised sidewalk with the pavers adhered to the top. They certainly did the beautiful job it deserved.

This is not the first time the Rickards have stepped up to the plate for Post #49 and its members. There have been times when something needed to be done and you didn’t have to ask them. They volunteer. It’s happened more than once.

Also thanks to Tim Harry of Lake Masonry in Pequot Lakes who did extensive face work on the three memorials in the park that needed some attention. He did a beautiful job.

And a thank you to Gary Morrison at Builders FirstSource in Pequot Lakes who voluntarily donated some supplies for the memorial.

Last, but not least, as of last fall there were gambling funds available at the American Legion Post #49 for such expenditures as the memorial as we worked on it. But with the COVID-19 mandatory shutdown on March 17, our Post #49 - along with all service clubs - is having shortcomings with nothing coming in, but bills are still due for insurance, taxes, wages for a small staff, utilities, etc.

Even though our bills for the memorial materials are not large, the post does not have the funds at this time.

I called Sharon Higgins, gambling manager for the Post #49 Auxiliary and her committee. Without hesitation she said they would be more than willing to help.

I don’t know what the final cost might be, but if there might be a small minus, not asking.

But if anyone would like to send a dollar or two in care of the American Legion Post #49 in Pequot Lakes, it looks like we might fall a little short on our memorial expenditures at this time, and we have a few items to put into place before we can finalize it all before Memorial Day.

We want to stay on top of bills as small as they might be. Anything would be appreciated.

American Legion Post #49 in Pequot Lakes has always been there for our community and surrounding area. That goes without saying.

As for Country Granite, Rickard & Sons and Lake Masonry, when you try to make it right for them (financially), each one said the same: “It’s for the veterans.”

Work on the memorial itself is 95% complete and all pavers, including the new ones, have been laid. It’s through the efforts of these people that we will be able to have all work done on the memorial before Memorial Day.

All we can say to them is thank you, it’s appreciated!