Calling all veterans and F’ville patriots


I am one of the newly elected Fayetteville City councilmen and I am honored to have been elected to serve the citizens of our great and progressively diverse community. I am also a 22-year U.S. Navy veteran, having served as a surface warfare officer and reaching the rank of commander (O-5). I am honored to have served our country and believe those who died in our armed services deserve highest honor and recognition, even if they served in an “unpopular war.”

Since assuming the position as city councilman, I have become aware of a project undertaken by fellow Councilman Larry Dell to erect a memorial for the Fayetteville natives who have sacrificed their lives in our nation’s wars. I am extremely surprised that this project has not received the full support of our community both from the private citizen as well as from the many outstanding businesses in our great city.

Peachtree City and Tyrone have parks or memorials to honor their veterans. Why should Fayetteville do anything less for our fallen heroes? No matter what war, soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guard personnel who give their lives in defense of American freedom should be honored nationally and in their home towns. This is not political, this is patriotic.

Councilman Larry Dell (U.S. Army 1st Calvary) has worked diligently to make this memorial a reality. He has done so without asking the city of Fayetteville to finance the project (Coweta County commissioners paid for the Newnan Veterans’ Park).

I am so proud of his efforts to build this memorial with private funds and donations that I am inspired to join him in the effort. Regardless of our ethnicity, our political preference, our religion, or any other excuse one may find, not to support this effort that would be all that it is, an excuse. We are all Americans and even though we may have differences, we can and should be united to recognize acts of valor and personal sacrifice to “keep America free.”

In a May 2, 2012 Citizen newspaper article, Councilman Dell reported that to date the project has only received approximately $12,000, with the Fayetteville Rotary Club donating $5,000 as a platinum sponsor.

The total project cost is estimated at $100,000, including in-kind donations. Although we are dealing with a difficult economic climate, I personally believe Fayetteville citizens could and should rally behind this effort to bring this memorial to fruition.

If every citizen who believe in the principles of this project would make an effort to spread the news about it and contribute, we can reach the financial goal to make this project a reality.

I vehemently agree with Councilman Larry Dell, who said that the intent is to create a memorial where people will come to honor those who died in past wars, to reflect on the humanity and the after-effects of those wars and to honor the soldiers who had the courage to risk their lives to save others. This is something we need to do, “because we need to honor our vets, especially those who paid the ultimate price,” Dell says.

I am asking for every veteran and every American patriot who believe our fallen veterans deserve recognition to please give. No gift is too small and certainly none is too large.

The Veterans Memorial at Patriot Park is a non-profit corporation. All donations are appreciated. Donations are also available in bronze, silver, gold and platinum sponsorship categories. Those interested in making a tax-deductible donation are asked to contact Larry Dell at 404-379-8825 or myself, Edward Johnson, at 770-856-3271 or through the Fayetteville City Hall at 770-461-6029 or at

Let Fayetteville citizens, veterans, and patriots unite to honor Fayetteville veterans who paid “the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.”

Edward Johnson, councilman

Fayetteville, Ga.