BY JOE OLENICK
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — The committee working on Lockport’s planned Fallen Heroes Memorial has set an Oct. 29 date for a groundbreaking ceremony.
While there isn't a design or funding yet, the goal is to stir public interest in the project. The ceremony is set for 4:30 p.m. Oct. 29 in Outwater Park.
Committee chairman Anthony Sammarco said there isn't a total cost to the project yet.
“A design will force a budget. It’s a chicken-egg thing,” he said.
The idea was floated around of having the public or students from the University at Buffalo or Niagara University submit designs for the memorial. R. Charles Bell, city director of planning and development, said he will call his contacts at UB.
Norman D. Allen, city director of engineering and public works, said his staff could make a structural design if asked. It issued a request for proposals that was due Sept. 6 and resulted in one response, which was rejected.
The memorial is to be centered on a nonfunctioning fountain in Outwater Park. It is meant to honor, in some way, all Lockport natives or residents who died in military, police or fire service.
The project grew out of a request by Lockport High School classmates of Patricia Parete to name a park after the Lockport native and Buffalo police officer who died Feb. 2 from injuries suffered when she was shot on duty.
At a meeting Tuesday, the committee did agree on a set of criteria for the memorial's honorees. They must have been born, died or at some point had legal residency in the City or Town of Lockport. They also must have died in the line of duty, a provision Sammarco said would include volunteer firefighters, or residents who had died in “a heroic act.” Sammarco said that would qualify “good Samaritans” for inclusion.
Committee member Marietta Schrader said only about $200 has been donated since the city Treasurer’s Office opened an account for the project.Contact reporter Joe Olenick at 439-9222, ext. 6241 or follow him on Twitter @joeolenick.