WWI Statue Inspires Man & CommunityPosted: Updated:
A statue in the North Watertown Cemetery is the likeness of Private Harold Wright. He was a scout who died after finding Germans as they crossed a river in France during World War I.
North country resident Jack Hammond's mother took him to Wright's statue when Jack was just a boy because she noticed Jack's fascination with military funerals.
“And my mother perhaps thought I was being too influenced by the ceremonies and not enough by the reality and she walked me in the cemetery very often and we could come by this statue and she would explain to me about Private Wright and his father who grieved so terribly over his death,” said Hammond.
Decades later, Hammond noticed that the statue was deteriorating.
"It made me sad so I noticed it was right across from and facing the Elks Club,” he said.
So he asked Anthony Verne, the exalted ruler of the Elks Club, if they would be interested in refurbishing it; and as it turned out, they were.
“A lot of the members feel really strongly about this project that we have overtaken so I want to give my hat off to Jack, the committee for doing a fine job,” said Verne.
It wasn't just the Elks; a couple of local monument companies as well as Jake Johnson came together to fix up the plot and replace the grass around it.
On November 10 at 11 a.m. there will be a re-dedication ceremony at the monument.