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Peoria Honors John McCain with Memorial Dedication
Peoria will make a special dedication to the late Senator John McCain during a Veterans Day ceremony to be held on Nov. 12 from 8:00 am to 10:00 am at the Peoria Veterans Memorial in Rio Vista Community Park.
The Peoria Veterans Memorial was originally built in 2007 during the construction of the Rio Vista Recreation Center. The memorial was re-dedicated by Mayor Cathy Carlat and the Peoria city council in 2017.
The memorial features notable wartime events engraved on an 88-foot black granite wall, a waterside deck, comfortable seating, shade structures, military branch flag display and the Peoria Honor Wall. The Honor Wall is an important and impactful element of Peoria’s Veterans Memorial, where individuals and families can honor their loved ones who serve or have served in the military. Each honor space includes the Veteran's name, rank, branch, and service years.
Peoria’s mayor and council took formal action naming the Senator John McCain Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza at its Oct. 16 meeting upon recommendation from the Parks and Recreation Board, and with support from the Peoria Veterans Memorial Board.
“Senator John McCain is an American hero. From his early years as a naval aviator, to the five and a half years tragically spent as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam, the senator devoted his entire life to the service of our great nation,” said Mayor Cathy Carlat. “His story is one of unwavering patriotism and tremendous resilience, and we are proud to honor his legacy - and all Vietnam veterans - at this meaningful memorial.”
The Memorial Plaza includes a 1967 Bell UH-1H Huey helicopter flown in Vietnam from 1968 – 1971.
The Huey, on loan from Light Horse Legacy, a Peoria-based non-profit encouraging the treatment and healing of Post-Traumatic Stress (PTS) suffered by U.S. combat veterans of all conflicts, sets a strong statement and definitive ‘welcome home’ to the soldiers who served in Vietnam.
The Peoria Veterans Memorial and the Senator John McCain Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza are open daily 6 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Rio Vista Community Park, located at 8866 W. Thunderbird Rd. For visiting information, call the Rio Vista Recreation Center at 623-773-8600 or visit online at www.peoriaaz.gov/veterans.
Memorial plaque that will be unveiled at the Veterans Day ceremony