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Savannah Celebrates the Greatest Generation

Oct 10, 2010

(SAVANNAH, GA) — It is time . . . time to speak with one voice in resounding gratitude for the bravery and heroism that defined an entire generation. One voice . . . one symbol . . . one memorial dedicated to the living and deceased Veterans of World War II. They were our neighbors and friends, our brothers and sisters, our aunts and uncles, our mothers and fathers and grandmothers and grandfathers. They were Savannah's sons and daughters and, along with their comrades from every city and town in our country, they became America's beloved sons and daughters.

We cannot repay them what they lost along the way, but we can make them a promise while there is still time. That promise? To never forget.

Conceptualized and designed by Savannah's own Eric Meyerhoff, this memorial is a visible symbol of a nation's gratitude for extraordinary acts of courage and selflessness and represents the culmination of years of planning and private community fund-raising. The memorial will be unveiled at the "Celebration of the Greatest Generation," a sentimental yet poignant event held on Saturday evening, November 6th at 5:30 p.m. in the beautiful Harborside Room of the Savannah Hyatt Regency Hotel, directly adjacent to the memorial itself.

One voice . . . one symbol . . .one memorial . . .one evening . . . a gala celebration to highlight the sights, sounds and times of the 1940s, and will feature live entertainment from local celebrities as well as authentic video and radio broadcasts that capture the most significant events of World War II broadcasting. Guests will view video footage from each battle theater including an address by Winston Churchill and Sights and Sounds of the Bombing of Great Britain; the Battle of Iwo Jima; an Air Force video provided by the Mighty Eighth Museum; and several stateside videos including addresses by General Patton and Franklin Delano Roosevelt and much, much more.

Continuing in celebratory fashion throughout the weekend, the Veterans Council of Chatham County is proud to announce that the long-awaited memorial will be dedicated at a formal ceremony on Sunday afternoon, November 7th at 3:00 p.m. on historic River Street at the Whitaker Street ramp directly in front of the Bohemian Hotel Savannah Riverfront on the west side of the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

Prominently displayed on the picturesque waterfront of our seaport city, the memorial is a visual representation of our theme "A World Apart." Standing 20 feet high, a steel globe clad with copper is overlaid with bronze land masses and islands. The globe is divided into two parts, representing the Eastern/European Theater and the Western/Pacific Theater. A walk-through between the two parts will display the names of the local men and women whose lives were lost in World War II.

Over 500 Savannahians lost their lives in World War II and hundreds more contributed to the war efforts in a civilian capacity in local shipyards that produced minesweepers and Liberty ships at a rate of one ship every 44 days. Many Savannahians feel that a World War II Memorial is long overdue as the U.S. is losing World War II veterans at the rate of 1000 per day. "The opportunity to thank surviving WWII Veterans is diminishing with each passing day," says Chairperson Bill Quinan. "These men and women gave selflessly in their service to our nation and our Allies, and in doing so, irrefutably changed the course of history for our parents, ourselves, our children and our children's children." Veterans' Associations, local businesses, local and nation-wide donors have all contributed to over $720,000 raised towards the total goal of $1 million. Many individuals have memorialized and honored a World War II Veteran family member or friend through donating $100 for the purchase of a brick that will carry the engraved name of their World War II hero. Donors may continue to support the Memorial by making corporate, individual or foundation gifts of cash or stock as well as purchase commemorative bricks.

Saturday evening's "Celebration of the Greatest Generation" tickets are $125 per person and will be available for purchase beginning October 11, 2010 at participating businesses in Savannah. Ticket price includes admission, live music, entertainment, food and beverages. The Dedication Ceremony on Sunday, November 7th at 3:00 p.m. is free and open to the public. For further information or to make a donation, visit http://www.YourWW2Hero.com, or call Cecilia Russo of Cecilia Russo Marketing, LLC, at 912-665-0005.

Donations

Donations made to the Veterans Council of Chatham county benefit everyone! We are now accepting donations for the new World War II monument that is to be installed on River Street. Remember, all donations made the the Veterans Council of Chatham County are tax deductible!

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Memorial Bricks

Bricks can be purchased for inclusion in the WWII Memorial to be located on River Street in downtown Savannah, GA.

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order form (pdf) »