Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum receiving generous help

The local Shrine and Museum has been in dire need of repairs for several years.

Posted: Dec 18, 2018 3:13 PM
Updated: Dec 19, 2018 6:17 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (FOX 55) - Tucked away into its own pocket of land on O'Day Road is the Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum. You might miss it if it weren't for the few signs along Bass Rd and US 30.

Paul Allen, who works with the Veterans National Memorial Shrine says if the US military has been involved, they're being honored at the site.

"We have monuments to all the wars and conflicts the United States has provided service to," Allen said.

Their top draw is one of 49 Merci Boxcars, a gift received from the French in 1949. People travel from all over the world to see the boxcar, which helps add value to the site.

Clarence Queen, Grand Chef de Gare with the 40 & 8, who are caretakers of the boxcar said "It has history to it. I mean this is a 100 year old organization that they sent this over here for and it just goes to show that 100 years ago, people thought about all of their veterans."

If you've even been to the shrine and museum after a hard rain, you'll know the ground swells with water that makes its way into the museum inside, causing significant damage to the floor, ceiling, and displays and making the site feel less valuable.

But something happened to get some repairs rolling.

Paul Allen said "luck of the draw, being at the right place at the right time."

Allen was able to get Lawnscape Site Development to come out and put all new drainage in the land and grade it towards the road. It was work they were proud to do according to Lee Keefer, the Superintendent of Lawnscape Site Development,

Keefer went on to explain, "later on I found out they didn't have no funding, it comes out of their pocket. When I moved the crew out there to do the job, inside me just said "go ahead and donate this to the vets who've served our business and our country.""

Then more businesses came together to help the fully volunteer funded and staffed memorial to American veterans.

An employee from the Strahm Group helped organize donations of all new flooring and ceiling tiles, as well as the labor to install. A company spokesperson said in part

"As a company we believe that it is our duty to help maintain buildings like this that represent such importance in our community."

Local UAW 2209 bought new display cases for the donated memorabilia. Peerless Cleaners volunteered to clean the uniforms. Other organizations helped donate labor to the cause.

The repairs are moving along, but the list of needs is long. The displays are expected to come out of storage for a grand reopening expected Memorial Day of 2019, but the site still needs your help says Allen.

"We have a shoestring budget, so we're asking for any and all donations. We're asking for volunteers and you don't have to ve a veteran to volunteer."

Find out how to help get in contact with the Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum. Information below

Facebook: Veteran's National Memorial Shrine

Address: 2122 O Day Rd. Fort Wayne, Indiana

Phone: (260) 267-5022

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 32437

Reported Deaths: 2030
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion9371546
Lake3347170
Cass15867
Allen135366
St. Joseph121834
Hendricks113567
Hamilton112391
Johnson1092104
Elkhart107028
Madison58259
Porter49521
Bartholomew48634
Clark47141
LaPorte41523
Tippecanoe3803
Howard37620
Jackson3681
Delaware35936
Hancock32327
Shelby32121
Floyd31539
Boone29335
Morgan27024
Vanderburgh2532
Montgomery23317
White2288
Decatur22431
Clinton2221
Grant19521
Noble19221
Harrison18821
Dubois1852
Henry1709
Greene16824
Warrick16528
Dearborn16421
Monroe16211
Vigo1507
Lawrence14623
Miami1391
Putnam1347
Jennings1284
Orange12422
Scott1183
Ripley1136
Franklin1068
Kosciusko971
Carroll932
Daviess8416
Marshall801
Steuben802
Wayne755
Newton7410
Wabash732
Fayette714
Jasper621
LaGrange622
Washington521
Fulton471
Jay460
Randolph453
Rush452
Jefferson421
Whitley412
Clay411
Pulaski400
Owen341
Sullivan331
DeKalb331
Brown331
Starke313
Perry260
Wells260
Huntington262
Knox250
Benton250
Tipton241
Crawford230
Blackford202
Switzerland190
Fountain182
Parke180
Spencer171
Posey160
Gibson142
Ohio130
Warren121
Adams121
Vermillion100
Martin90
Union80
Pike60
Unassigned0159

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 33439

Reported Deaths: 2044
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin5486243
Cuyahoga4137224
Marion262823
Hamilton2523131
Lucas2162233
Pickaway204635
Mahoning1367173
Summit1315160
Butler82626
Stark70091
Columbiana68250
Lorain65959
Montgomery61716
Trumbull54447
Belmont40312
Miami35130
Warren34419
Tuscarawas3264
Ashtabula31633
Portage31357
Medina31020
Delaware30213
Lake28712
Wood28045
Geauga26129
Wayne25650
Fairfield2484
Clark2316
Licking21811
Mercer2014
Allen20132
Clermont1975
Richland1893
Erie1635
Darke15619
Madison1447
Washington11819
Crawford1103
Morrow1041
Greene985
Ottawa9412
Putnam8714
Monroe7412
Sandusky7011
Hocking694
Ross672
Jefferson652
Auglaize643
Huron551
Williams521
Hancock481
Muskingum460
Union460
Clinton430
Hardin410
Shelby402
Wyandot372
Fayette370
Logan370
Fulton360
Coshocton340
Defiance332
Guernsey330
Preble311
Holmes291
Carroll293
Lawrence280
Champaign271
Brown251
Knox231
Highland191
Seneca192
Vinton191
Ashland190
Perry181
Athens181
Henry150
Scioto150
Paulding130
Jackson120
Harrison100
Adams81
Gallia71
Van Wert60
Pike60
Meigs60
Noble50
Morgan50
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 70°
Angola
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 70°
Huntington
Overcast
69° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 69°
Decatur
Overcast
68° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 68°
Van Wert
Overcast
68° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 68°
Scattered Storms Thursday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events