EYEWITNESS NEWS (WBRE/WYOU) — On this week’s Veterans Voices, a local woman has a plan to honor women veterans in a unique way, and it’s not the first time she’s spent a lot of her free time and effort to pay tribute to NEPA’s wartime heroes.
Honesdale’s Kim Erikson is no stranger to the spotlight. Earlier this year she won Eyewitness News’ Remarkable Women Contest, in part for filling a dump truck with pennies for cancer research.
But it’s her volunteer work benefitting local veterans that’s gaining her a loyal following.
She raised thousands of dollars to fly World War II veterans to see their memorials in Washington D.C.
She also organized the effort to install 17 podiums and hung dozens of banners in Wayne County to showcase each hero’s history.
Now, Erickson has a new project: A monument for female veterans, past and present, and an accompanying booklet detailing their accomplishments.
“I just love doing local veterans stuff. I think the younger generation forgets about them. Because of them we have the privileges we have, and freedoms,” said Erikson.
Erikson is collecting stories from women veterans for the book through a simple questionnaire. Some are stories that made history, like Loretta Walsh of Olyphant, the first women to enlist in the U.S. Navy. Others are from current members of the armed forces who wanted their stories to be part of the booklet.
Erikson is the daughter of a veteran and says projects like this are important to her, but she also credits her community. A local artist has agreed to design the monument, and another group will donate much of the work.
“When we unveil the monument, I’ll have this booklet so it will be something that will be at a historic site. The day this monument was unveiled, these women wanted to shair their story,” stated Erikson.
Kim Erikson is hoping to have the monument finished by September by the Dimmick building near the Wayne County Courthouse.