The Gold Star Families Memorial Monument was designed “To honor Gold Star Families, preserve the memory of the fallen, and stand as a stark reminder that Freedom is not free.” Each monument features black granite and is two sided, one which depicts the words, “Gold Star Families Memorial Monument, A tribute to Gold Star Families and relatives who sacrificed a Loved One for Freedom.” The opposing sign is a representation of the community it has been placed in and their local Gold Star Families & Fallen Heroes.
The Bay City Gold Star Monument displays the Mackinaw Bridge, a family of four, an etched photo of “The Flag Raised at Iwo Jima,” and a folded American flag, being cradled by loved ones. The center of the monument has a cut out of a soldier, representing the loved one who paid the ultimate sacrifice in the name of Freedom.
The Bay Veterans Foundation organized the project in Battery Park, downtown Bay City, next to the City Market. This monument is a tribute that supports veterans and upholds the sacrifice that they have made for their country and communities. Bay County has the 4th largest number of veteran residents in the state of Michigan, according to MLive.com, with over 8,300 in 2015.
The Bay County Gold Star Families Memorial Monument was dedicated on September 30, 2017. The project duration was approximately 4 weeks long and included site work, landscaping, cement work and placing of the monuments.
Monument Owner: Bay Veterans Foundation
Bay Veterans Foundation: Keith Markstrom, President
Bay Veterans Foundation: Dave Bledsoe, Project Manager
Serenus Johnson Project Manager: Dave Arnold
Serenus Johnson Team: Billy Woolwine III, Mike Marchlewicz, Eric Sansburn, Dave Rochow
Serenus Johnson Construction: Sitework
Bailey Granite & Monuments, Flatwoods, KY: Monument setting and placement