The state's first memorial to honor our veterans should have opened on Monday, but 6 1/2 months after the groundbreaking, that deadline came and went.
The plans have been in place for quite some time, but construction on the project still hasn't started.
The Veterans Memorial would be built in the park right outside the Hartford Armory. Last April, state officials broke ground on five granite columns signifying all five branches of the military and more than 1.3 million statewide who have served in the military.
As towns and cities across the state honored Connecticut's more than 250,000 vets, some of them said they were still wondering why the building is not finished.
"It just hasn't happened and it gets frustrating for us because we'd like to see as many monuments for our people as possible," said Commander Larry Riley.
The work is not completed because bids for the project came back almost $500,000 more than the $660,000 that's budgeted.
"None could even be accepted, had to be rejected," said Department of Veterans' Affairs Commissioner Linda Schwartz. "Now in process, some think we've scaled back the design. We haven't scaled it back. We're looking to go out to be bid to a larger audience or group of vendors."
Schwartz said there's no paid staff, and they're asking for patience.
"I'm very disappointed. I've been working on it for a long time too," Schwartz said.
The project's board of directors is preparing for a rebid in the next week or so.
Anyone who'd like to help fund this can order an engraved granite paver with your veteran's name, rank, branch of the military and years of service or conflict. The cost is $150 for a 12-by-6-inch paver or $500 for one that's a square foot.
People can send donations to the following location:
Connecticut State Veterans Memorial
C/O Rockville Bank
P.O. Box 660
Rockville, CT 06066
For more information about the veterans memorial or to make a donation, click here.
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