Although Haverhill’s new Vietnam Veterans Memorial was officially completed last year, the Commission that oversaw its relocation and improvement is turning its attention to future maintenance.
Ralph T. Basiliere, chairman of the Vietnam Veterans Ad Hoc Memorial Committee and a former U.S. Marine, kicked off an effort this week to pay for future operations and maintenance with a $15,000 donation from Covanta.
“The Commission has been able to leverage its credibility with our coalition partners to continue to maintain the park on the long term so the Vietnam veterans get their just due,” he said.
Basiliere thanked Covanta Asset Manager Mark Van Weelden and Facility Manager Bill Zaneski during a tour Wednesday of Mill Brook Park. The site near the entrance to Plug Pond, was overhauled to accommodate brick-paved walkways; two monuments, including a 13-foot memorial honoring the 13 Haverhill residents killed during the war; and education stations.
Zaneski said Covanta is providing $3,000 annually for five years to kick start the new fund.
“Being veterans and being part of the Haverhill community for a long time now, we’re always looking for different ways to reach out and support the different community causes,” Zaneski said.
Covanta previously stepped up in 2020 at the height of the pandemic when construction donations slowed considerably.
Others who wish to donate may contact Basiliere at 978-891-2281.