Sarasota News Leader

11/23/2012

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SOME EXPLANATION, PLEASE Sarasota's doughboy statue is in fine shape, but vets say it needs some explanation. Photo by Nor- man Schimmel VETERANS SEEKING PUBLIC-ART MARKER FOR DOUGHBOY STATUE By Stan Zimmerman City Editor After silently memorializing Sarasota's fallen veterans for close to 100 years, a downtown war memorial deserves more recognition, say three living vets who stepped forward at the Wednesday, Nov. 14, Public Art Committee meeting. former Sarasota Mayor Jack Gurney. "Let's provide some history of this monument." "We have a relatively simple request," said The octagonal base with bronze plaques topped by a statue of a World War I "dough- boy" infantryman is the gathering point for the public after the Memorial Day and Veterans Day parades troop through downtown. "We are one of the few towns our size that still has these parades," said Dan Kunkel, chair- man of the Patriotic Observance Committee of the Sarasota Veterans Commission. "We have all these people who gather there," said Gurney. "But there's nothing there to ex- plain [the marker's] history or the story of the doughboy. We'd like to see an educational marker." Gurney was a Marine. Kunkel served in the infantry. The Public Art Committee took their request under advisement, sending it to staff to exam- ine issues of expense and content. The pro- posed language for a sign will come back to the committee at its next meeting, Feb. 13.

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