State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C,I-Big Flats), Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R,C,I-Corning) and Joe Sempolinski, District Director for Congressman Tom Reed, joined together to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of the Steuben County Veterans Memorial. The lawmakers also honored local WWII veteran Warren Thompson, whose efforts were instrumental to the construction of the memorial.
“Our state has a rich history of men and women serving in the Armed Forces,” the lawmakers said in a joint statement. “For 25 years, the Steuben Veterans Memorial has stood to honor the service of those brave men and women. However, this memorial would not be here today without the work of Warren Thompson, a veteran himself. Warren led the effort to spearhead the construction of the new building, and we would like to thank him for his dedication to the veterans in our community and state.”
In 1946, Admiral Chester Nimitz, along with several other decorated military officers, dedicated the Steuben County War Memorial. By the 1980s, the memorial was in disrepair. This state of disrepair led to the formation of committees to address the problem. It was decided that the original memorial would be demolished and a new one constructed in its place. Thus, due to the efforts of Warren Thompson, the Veterans Memorial Association, VFW Post 1470 and the Ladies Auxiliary, the new Steuben County Veterans Memorial was completed in 1988.
The event also dedicated a new POW/MIA display and honored Thompson, a former POW himself, for making the new memorial a reality.