STOW — The police and fire departments have formed a foundation to support the construction of a memorial in front of the safety center on Darrow Road honoring the city’s first responders.
Stow Fire Chief Mark Stone noted the memorial will "serve several purposes," the first of which is to "recognize and honor those who bravely gave their lives performing the duties of their professions."
In addition, each first responder who retires from the city would have their name and dates of service engraved on bricks and added to the memorial.
The Stow First Responders Memorial Foundation also established the Stow First Responders Memorial Fund, which was initiated in 2018 to support the construction of a First Responders Memorial. The memorial fund will be used to raise money for construction of the memorial and as a permanent funding source to help maintain the site.
Donations are now being accepted by the memorial fund to pay for the construction of the site.
"We need the assistance of our community to make this memorial possible," said Stow Police Chief Jeff Film, who is also the president of the memorial fund. "Our goal is to make sure we are recognizing the men and women who devoted their professions to this community with a permanent memorial, which they truly deserve."
The cost of the memorial is $145,000. That figure is based on a quote to build the memorial that was provided by Columbus-based OHM, according to Film.The chief said the goal is to raise all of the money before construction begins. Film said he hopes to break ground on the memorial in the spring of 2020, with the goal of finishing the project that summer.
"We plan on doing an annual fundraiser of some sort through our police and fire lodges to help defer the ongoing maintenance upkeep," added Film.
To donate to the fund, visit http://sfrmfund.com/ or call the foundation at 330-474-3721. Make checks payable to the Stow First Responders Memorial Fund.
Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421, firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.