New Heroes Park Veterans Memorials Dedicated

NORFOLK — Heroes Park made room for a couple more heroes on Sunday afternoon.

Two new monuments, one remembering World War Two and one remembering the Korean War, were dedicated in the plaza in front of the Norfolk Veterans’ Home.

The Wilke family from Leigh helped raise funds and design the World War Two monument to help honor Leonard Wilke who died in action. The Reigle’s from Madison helped spearhead the Korean monument, with Kenny Reigle was injured in combat in their thoughts.

Leonard Wilke’s nephew, Mike Wilke says the support of the community was evident in the process.

“I think we’re fortunate to have a community that really appreciates what the veterans have done,” Wilke said. “Non-veterans appreciate it as well as those who served.”

The Wilkes and Reigles participated in ribbon cuttings before the crowd went inside for a ceremony that featured remarks from author Joyce Winfield and musical tributes.

Veteran Shane Weidner shared a story about seeing a monument for a battle Reigle participated in when Weidner was stationed near North Korea.

Wilke is happy with how the monuments turned out and is excited for more of his family to get to see them.

“He had a one-year-old daughter at the time when he was killed,” Wilke said. “So I look forward to the day when she can come out and see it.”

The new monuments join an already existing Vietnam War memorial.

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