Seven Lakes July 4th Circa 1987
Tom Brokaw coined the phrase, the “Greatest Generation.“ These men and women who served in the armed forces, whereby some gave all, are only remembered in a patchwork of memorials in small towns like ours, throughout this great nation.
From Waupun, WI Area “Veterans Memorial Wall“ to Seven Lakes “Wall Of Honor“ these memorials rise in tribute to those veterans who have served, or are now serving our country, since WWII to the War on Terrorism and a place for honorees for future hostilities.
These men of the WWII era and their wives were the pioneers of the Seven Lakes community.
They were all the pillars of the community that joined the Country Club, played golf and dined there, exercised at the fitness center, played tennis, and were the initial members of community organizations like the Lions Club and present day Kiwanis.
My in-laws Chuck and Mona Levinger were part of this group with deep roots to the community upon retirement beginning in 1984. I remember visiting and it seemed like every night they went to somebody‘s house and joined others to play cards and have cocktails.Chuck along with his best friend Hank Mancini went and enlisted the same day, Chuck in the Marine Corp and Hank in the Army Air Forces.
My father-in-law will be remembered on this Memorial Wall for his service in the South Pacific including its final major battle, “Bloody Okinawa.“ Hank will be remembered for his notoriety and receiving an Oscar for “Moon River.“
All that served our country then and now need to be honored, remembered and never forgotten.
It was this group that began what would become the July 4th picnic which included mostly decorated pontoon boats (sans golf carts) on Lake Sequoia and Bar B Q on the beach. Seven Lakes was molded into the community it is today, partially through their efforts and deep rooted community volunteer efforts.
With the success of he Avenue of Flags, we surveyed our community businesses and merchants with the Business Guild, other organizations, and residents to determine if this memorial would be feasible and would they support the project.
Their response was overwhelming.
The cost of the project is currently at $9,500 thanks to long time resident Bob Van Houten, owner of BVH Construction donating the foundation.
We are seeking donations from the veterans that will be on the wall as well as community members. Our research indicates that other towns raise approximately 50% from the honorees and the remainder by residents and businesses. There are 210 honorees to be etched into the wall and with a donation of $30 we will reach our goal.
According to the US Census there are 4,903 residents. Approximately 2,600 + adults and 351 veterans. The wall can be built with only a $5 tax deductible donation from residents of our community.
We will honor 53 of these veterans who were mostly members of the Greatest Generation, having called Seven Lakes their eternal home and are laid to rest at the Seven Lakes cemetery on our community memorial.
By: Victoria Levinger
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