Renovations to Vietnam Wall of SWFL to honor all branches of the military

Reporter: Erika Jackson
Published: Updated:

The organization behind a Vietnam Wall in Punta Gorda wants people to come to the park and take away something special. That is why they are working to make the park accessible to everyone who visits.

A memorial, which is in the heart of Punta Gorda, honors Vietnam’s fallen. The many who served alongside Air Force veteran, Dick Carr.

“There are 58,318 names on there,” said Richard Carr, president of the Vietnam Wall of SWFL. “All of whom have a story.”

Now, three years after its opening, the wall’s Vice-President Stacy Jones told WINK News the area surrounding it called Veterans Park is getting a makeover.

Crews recently added accessible parking spots and soon other areas of the park will be easily accessible to everyone. Jones points to a ramp that she said is not Americans with Disabilities Act compliant. It will be among the adjustments.

“We want to make this ADA compliant,” Jones said, “so folks that are disabled have the ability to come here, reminisce on the wall, and be safe.”

Crews will relocate a purple heart monument to add seating for about 50 people. There will be amphitheater-style seating, allowing visitors to come to events without having to bring their chairs.

Around 100 more memorial bricks will be added to honor veterans of all wars and branches of service.

City officials will look for contractors next month, with renovations expected to be completed by Spring 2020. These improvements come with a $500,000 price tag, which the City of Punta Gorda and donations will cover to honor America’s heroes properly.

“It will just look and feel like a real first-class facility everywhere,” Carr said. “Not just the wall.”

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