A memorial park for veterans brings out the best in a community – and uses engraved brick – Pathway Red Pine Hall Brick clay pavers and a specialized paving system to make sure that veterans are remembered, by name, branch of service and years that they served.
Bob Kornman had an idea: What if you could find a way, in your town, to build a park to honor all of those who have served their country in the armed forces?
So a few people in Lititz, Pennsylvania, which was once named by Budget Travel magazine as the Coolest Small Town in America, lived up to their reputation and did just that, with the Veterans Honor Park of Lancaster County.
Eight years ago, Kornman, himself an officer in the U.S. Army for a decade and a retired landscape designer in civilian life, began holding meetings among some of his friends, including C. David Kramer, Matthew D. Knouse and David Zimmerman.
The idea was to come up with all of the funds required for the park before construction began – and not to ask for any funds from the government. So the friends formed a committee and got started.
And before long, everyone got involved, by either donating supplies and labor or giving big discounts. Kornman himself did the design. Jason Best of ELA Group Inc. did the construction drawings. Walter Fry of The Edgewood Company did the hardscape installation. And Pine Hall Brick Company distributor Drohan Brick and Hardscaping provided the red Pathway pavers.
Pine Hall Brick also recommended a somewhat different approach to installing the pavers, by borrowing a method used to lay thin pavers over concrete. The pathways were first paved in concrete, then a level of roofing felt, then the pavers.
That method works well because it allows the original pavers to be easily removed and then replaced with engraved bricks. That’s important, because the park orders more engraved bricks four times a year, with 12 to 15 bricks at a time, as a fundraiser. The design also eliminates possible mortar joint and bed deterioration, which minimizes park maintenance and facilitates stormwater runoff.
The park has several goals. They include:
• Honoring our country’s veterans’ service and sacrifice with a timeless monument having a visual character to which they, relatives and friends can easily relate.
• Implementing a design that has a calming, reflective effect on visitors without harsh colors and elements, emphasizing relaxation and contemplation.
• Providing an opportunity for all U.S. veterans to be recognized, some by name, for their duty and service in a meaningful and physical way.
And the best part? If you would like, you can come to a public celebration opening the park, even though the project was completed more than two years ago, in June 2019.
That’s because there was little time for the committee to organize a significant public event for Veterans Day 2019. Then, with the onset of the Covid pandemic, all major gatherings in the park have been postponed. A large event for Memorial Day 2022 is now being organized.