Veterans of Foreign Wars auxiliary president visits Rothschild Gold Star Monument
ROTHSCHILD (WAOW) – The head of a National Veterans Group was in central Wisconsin Wednesday visiting the future sight of a new monument honoring families of fallen soldiers.
The Gold Star monument will soon stand in Rothschild.
At Veterans Memorial Park, soldiers and families are honored for their service to our country.
The Gold Star monument will soon be the newest addition to the park, next to the Rothschild Village Hall.
The Gold Star monument honors families who have lost their loved ones in combat.
Wednesday, Gold Star mothers and the National Veterans of Foreign Wars president from Connecticut stopped by to see the work in progress.
"This is a wonderful location. I think this monument is just going to be terrific and it's going to be a place where families can come to remember," said Ann Panteleakos.
“It will be a place probably where we can come and, and, sort of visit with out son, so to speak, a place that can hold his memory,” said Gold Star mother Gloria Sonnentag.
She lost her son Marlin Sonnentag, a marine, in 1986 after he participated in a Libya bombing.
"He was six weeks away from being a corporal, at that point and time is what his commanding officer told us. I always told the kids it didn't matter what they did, as long as they liked what they did and they did it well," said Gloria Sonnentag.
She says the monument can connect families facing the same tragedy.
"It's a very hard, hard thing, I can't even describe how, it's probably the most difficult thing I'll ever go through," she told Newsline 9.
The Gold Star monument is one of three monuments at Veterans Memorial Park. Visitors say the park will help the community remember those who served from the Rothschild area.
"Some people are lucky enough not to have a loss like this, but they need to know that there are people out there that have had this loss, and they need to respect the veterans and their families, and by having something like this, it's a reminder, of that fact that freedom is not free," said Panteleakos.
"I think there's a lot of people out there that have gone through this and there's not been any acknowledgment and if they have something like this in the community, it makes them, it kind of helps make you feel whole again," said Sonnentag.
The chairman of Veterans Memorial Park says it's taken more than seven years to build the park.