Las Vegas Sun

December 11, 2023

Las Vegas Veterans Memorial selection unveiled to city council

Mayor asks for project to be completed by Veterans Day in 2011

Veterans Memorial

Courtesy Las Vegas Veterans Memorial Association

A rendering of the Las Vegas Veterans Memorial designed by Douwe Blumberg.

Las Vegas Veterans Memorial

A rendering of the Las Vegas Veterans Memorial designed by Douwe Blumberg. Launch slideshow »

Huntridge Circle Park

A sculptor's vision that shows soldiers from more modern times as well as soldiers from past conflicts is the winning concept for a Veteran's Memorial that will be constructed in Las Vegas.

"It's a salute to our country and to our veterans," Bill Marion, a representative of the Las Vegas Memorial Foundation, told the Las Vegas City Council today, referring to the work of Artist Douwe (pronounced "Dow") Blumberg.

The council was told there are no public funds being spent on the project. Although there is no definite timetable for when the project would be finished, Mayor Oscar Goodman said he would like to see it completed by Veteran's Day 2011.

"This is an awesome opportunity to highlight the conflict that we've been in and to certainly say thank you to the men and women who have served this country," said Councilman Steve Ross.

Mayor Pro-Tem Gary Reese praised members of the foundation for pushing through on the project.

"This is one of the nicest things we've gotten for Las Vegas," Reese said. "It is going to be a choice destination for people to go to, to just spend 15 minutes or 15 seconds to remember."

Blumberg's concept was picked among the four finalists from around the country who competed for the project, a world-class veterans memorial to be constructed at Huntridge Circle Park on Maryland Parkway near Charleston Boulevard.

Blumberg presented a monument with a central scene of soldiers in a modern-day battle surrounded by veterans of other eras. Each of Blumberg’s statues are 125 percent life size. The design also incorporated granite walls with quotations.

Blumberg's work was approved by the selection committee and then was submitted to the Las Vegas Arts Commission, which unanimously approved the selection, Marion said.

Blumberg, from the University of Southern California's Idyllwild's School of the Arts and Music, has more than 200 private and public commissions, Marion said.

"He designed the U.S. Army's Special Forces Monument, the New Jersey Fallen Soldiers Monument and he was a finalist for the Ground Zero Project commemorating 9-11 in New York," Marion said.

"His design has haunting sculptures that are designed in a stainless steel, representing American military involvement in every American conflict," Marion said.

The design portrays not only how the war impacts veterans, but on how it impacts their families, he said.

"In Douwe's own words," Marion said, "'The American veterans experience remains fundamentally unchanged from Bunker Hill to Fulusia. Their dedication and sacrifice shared by their loved ones form the very pages upon which our country's history has and will be written. Love of country, family, honor and the brotherhood of arms are the passionate codes binding together all generations of soldiers together through time. The dual overarching themes of this monument are the continuity of dedication and sacrifice through time and the debt of gratitude owed to all generations of American veterans and their families.'"

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