The City of Big Bear Lake has plans to continue honoring our military veterans, as well as local servicemen and women, as evidenced by two agenda items reviewed in the September 14 meeting of City Council. On Monday, Councilmembers approved an expenditure, up to $5,000, to relocate the Vietnam Memorial in Meadow Park to Veterans Park. The Vietnam Memorial has been at Meadow Park for nearly 40 years, since being dedicated by the Bear Valley Republican Women’s Club in October 1969. Prompted by a request from the Big Bear Valley Recreation and Park District, city staff will coordinate the effort to relocate the memorial, which includes a plaque honoring nine locals–including Donald Cooper, Jack Knepp, Robert Pearcy, Richard Croxen, Ray Moran Jr. and Donald Ridings, who were killed in action–to a more fitting, and reverent location.
In a second item, the City’s Cheri Haggerty brought forth a proposal to introduce an Armed Services banner program to Big Bear Lake, as has been implemented in Rancho Cucamonga, Diamond Bar and Montclair. As proposed, banners can be purchased to honor those in the military from the Big Bear Valley (not just the City), offering a tribute to those who may not yet be veterans yet, per Council’s Liz Harris, “serve us in such a significant way.” The banners would hang from lightpoles, and will likely be in or adjacent to Veterans Park. City staff hopes to have this program in place prior to Veterans Day, though it will be revisited by Council in the meantime.
In a more immediate way, the community is invited to honor Big Bear veteran and 1999 Big Bear High School graduate Jared Landaker next Saturday, as his family and the Seven Stars Foundation will host the third annual 1st Lieutenant Jared M. Landaker Memorial Run for Freedom, which starts at Snow Summit at 8am on September 26. The family-friendly event features a 5K, 10K and 15K, and proceeds will benefit the Seven Stars Foundation, which covers the local Jared Landaker Memorial Scholarship Fund and donations to Veterans with Traumatic Brain Injury, and Big Bear High School. This year’s theme for the run is “Without Freedom, There Are No Choices!”
- 1st Lt. Jared Landaker to Be Featured on HLN Network’s “Fallen Heroes” Segment This Evening; Third Annual Memorial Run Set for September 26
- Family, Friends, Marines and BBHS Classmates Come Together for Third Annual 1st Lieutenant Jared M. Landaker Memorial Run for Freedom
- American Legion Honors Veterans on California’s First “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” on March 30