FALMOUTH — During World War II, fewer than 150 students attended Falmouth High School. Some of those students were called to serve in the war. Six did not return.
Now those six names are being remembered in a monumental way.
An ad-hoc committee established two years ago by the Town Council was charged with siting, design, construction and fundraising for a memorial honoring Falmouth veterans. The project is virtually complete, and is expected to be unveiled on Veterans Day, Tuesday, Nov. 11.
The monument, on land leased to the town by American Legion Post 164 at 65 Depot Road, is actually two memorials.
An 8-foot-tall slab of Vermont granite commemorates the service of all the town’s veterans, and has the inscription “all gave some, some gave all” on the back. A smaller monument lists the names of the six FHS alumni who died in World War II. This monument is a duplicate of a plaque displayed in the former Plummer-Motz School.
The entire monument, representing each branch of military service, weighs more than 4 1/2 tons. The memorial will remain covered until the Veterans Day unveiling.
That ceremony will also mark the end of the Veterans Memorial Committee, formed by the council in July 2012. Since then, the committee has overseen each detail of the project, which cost $55,000, all of which was privately raised.
In addition to the monument, the funds paid for a flagpole, curbing, landscaping, tree and stump removal, new trees and shrubbery, underground electrical work, paving and benches. The American Legion gave the town an easement for the memorial, and the town will be in charge of maintaining it.
Earlier this week, all that remained to be done was to finish laying some of the sidewalk.
The town had initially offered to subsidize the monument, but the committee turned down the money. Instead, the committee sought donations and was so successful that it raised the necessary funds by February, three months ahead of schedule.
“It was solely raised by the donors. The town of Falmouth did not have to vote to contribute to it,” committee member Carol Irving Kauffman said.
At first, the committee met only monthly, while members researched similar monuments throughout Maine. As work progressed, members met more frequently, and Kauffman said they have been meeting every week since Labor Day. Their final meeting will be Thursday, Nov. 6.
On Monday, the Town Council unanimously approved a resolution to recognize the committee and the result of its work.
Kauffman said the memorial was long overdue.
“I think we’ve come up with a good-looking monument,” Kauffman said. “It was fun.”
The Falmouth Veterans Memorial, which will be unveiled on Nov. 11, weighs over 4 tons and is made of Vermont granite.
Until its unveiling ceremony, the monument to Falmouth’s veterans will remain covered. The memorial cost a total of $55,000, all of which was privately raised.