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Veterans seek funds for Civil War memorial statue restoration

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Albany/HV: Veterans seek funds for Civil War memorial statue restoration
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Pittsfield veterans are raising money for what they say is an important cause. YNN's Madeleine Rivera has more on this project and what veterans are hoping from the community.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- In the middle of Pittsfield's Park Square is the city's Civil War monument, a figure of one of the city's historical roots.

"The statue is really central to the story of war here in Pittsfield. Soldiers, when they left the city to go to war, they left from Park Square. When they returned, they were welcomed at Park Square," said James McGrath, program manager for the city's Department. of Community Development.

But the statue which has long been a symbol of service now needs some service of its own.

"We're hoping for people to donate for this restoration so that we can save this monument," said veteran Arnold Parros.

He's been on several committees to improve other war monuments in the city. Now, he wants to do the same improvements for the Civil War Monument, even donating $500 of his own money for the cause.

"Just to let veterans know that they'll never be forgotten, that their comrades and its citizens are never going to let this statue fall to the wayside and deteriorate and fall over eventually, it's an important statement," said Parros.

There are two parts to this restoration project. The statue's pedestal, as well as the bronze statue, will have to be restored. This will be the first restoration done since this statue was erected 140 years ago. And it'll take a lot of effort from the community.

The estimated cost of the restoration is $15,000. But the veterans hope to raise another $15,000 for future maintenance of the statue. They will hold several fundraisers to reach their goal.

"It's a lot of work, but it's well worth the effort," said Parros.

So far, the Civil War Memorial Fund has about $1,600, a long way off from what they need, but a good start for these veterans who are determined to keep a symbol of this community standing.

You can write a check to the Civil War Memorial Fund and mail it to their office at Room 111, 70 Allen Street, Pittsfield City Hall.

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