CAREFREE – Honoring and appreciating the selfless service of our nation’s veterans has been of utmost importance in the Town of Carefree for many years. In 2019, the Town celebrated its 11th Annual Veterans Day Honor in November, and the first of what will become an annual Memorial Day Tribute in the Cave Creek Cemetery commenced this past May. In keeping with these annual traditions, a group of area veterans has initiated the creation and development of a Veterans Memorial within the Carefree Desert Gardens as a place of remembrance and reflection for the community.
“The Town of Carefree has for several years been in search of a project that will allow us to perpetually honor our local veterans” stated Vice Mayor John Crane. “This project will permit us to pay homage to the many veterans from all branches of service who live and work in Carefree and neighboring communities.”
A development group will address all aspects of this important project, from implementing the design, developing architectural and engineering drawings of the selected Memorial, identifying an appropriate site, fund raising and working with contractors to build the piece. The working timeline is to have the project completed by Memorial Day, 2020, and to dedicate it during the Town’s Memorial Day Tribute on Monday, May 25.
The property where the Memorial will sit is within the Carefree Desert Gardens. A site in the western half of the Gardens has already been identified and approved by the group, and the Town of Carefree donated the land for this purpose.
Leading the charge is U.S. Army veteran and Carefree resident Mike Ferrell, joined by U.S. Marine Corps veteran and VETSBuilt Contracting owner Bob Jenkins, along with U.S. Air Force veteran and Cave Creek American Legion Post 34 member Pratt Ashworth. U.S. Navy veteran, Carefree resident and recent inductee to the Arizona Veteran Hall of Fame, Mike Wold rounds out the planning team. Also working on the project is landscape architect Joe Henkemeyer from New West Design, who is donating his time and expertise to assist in the creation of the memorial.
In the coming weeks, additional details will be shared regarding the planning schedule, as well as how to volunteer for and/or contribute funding for this important tribute.
For more information about the Memorial and planning, please contact the Town of Carefree at 480-488-3686.