THE INVERNESS MEMORIAL



THE INVERNESS MEMORIAL

FOR THE TROOPS


STAGE ONE:  THE STATUES ARRIVE IN INVERNESS  FOR THE

MILITARY SERVICE MEMORIAL
After a  1842 mile trip, crated, and weighing  1100.00+ pounds, the statues arrived in
 Inverness, Florida to be stored until ready to be moved into the new park area
next to the courthouse building…


STATUES ARRIVE FROM COLORADO TO INVERNESS FLORIDA FOR THE UNVEILING OF THE 
THE MILITARY SERVICE MEMORIAL IN INVERNESS FLORIDA
FRANK DIGIOVANNI,  CITY MANAGER    ELLIE SCARFONE,  FOUNDATION PRESIDENT
DAVID TROUP, TREASURER,    AL JACOBSON VP /SEC /OPERATIONS



THE UNVEILING TEAM
  AL ZIMMERMAN, MEDALIST VIETNAM HELICOPTER
ELLIE SCARFONE,  FOUNDATION PRESIDENT
SCOTT STEARMAN,  MASTER SCULPTURE 
DAVID TROUP, TREASURER AND MRS TROUP
SHARMAN McCARTY AND  AL JACOBSON, VP/ SEC/ OPERATIONS


THE MILITARY SERVICE MEMORIAL - INVERNESS FLORIDA

When one door closes, it seems another door opens,  a couple of years ago we found we have a new beginning and new project.  After our president, Ellie Scarfone met with Frank DeGiovanni, City Manager of Inverness, a town known for its love of the military, conversation led to cooperation on a level we were not used to.  They were looking for enhancement, we had experience and product knowledge, experience and they were willing to put it all together, graciously.   

The best way to describe Inverness is a little town with a really big heart.   Thus a Military Service Memorial, with all the essence of what we were about,  and what the city was about,  and with their  councils approval the die was cast.  Our Memorial Foundation would work with the City to build the Military Service Memorial.

In cooperation with the city of Inverness Florida, January 20, 2018) we Unveiled a New City Park and Memorial to those who served in our country’s wars. 

In the photo above our team met with City Manager Frank DiGiovanni, our organizations President Ellie Scarfone, Treasurer David Troup,  Vice President /Sec/Operations Alan Jacobson and we unveiled the statues we will be presenting to the city for their new Military Service Memorial Park being built in the middle of town and accessible to all.   

Inverness is close to the Florida National Cemetery. The Florida National Cemetery is part of the United States National Cemetery system located near the city of Bushnell in Sumter County, Florida.  Administered by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, it encompasses 512.9 acres, and began interments in 1988.

 

SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, 2018  PRESS NOTIFICATION

The Military Service Memorial  for the fallen will be presented today to the public in the Florida City of Inverness.  The city has graciously provided the resources for a new city park located strategically in a very high traffic area where it will be seen, open to and experienced by all, 24/7/365.

It is close to the hallowed ground of the  Florida National Cemetery located in Bushnell Florida, next  to highways 41 and 44 on the side of the government center building in a beautiful new park. 

It is this proximity to the FNC cemetery, supported by an incredibly large community of military, civilian retirees, and a very progressive city government that moves forward on things, the town of Inverness Florida, made the selection for our project simple. 

From start to finish the project went as planned and the results exemplify the cooperation, efforts, perfection and belief in what was the final goal, the recognition of the those who served.

Burial in a national cemetery is open to all members of the armed forces who have met a minimum active duty service requirement and were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable. A Veteran’s spouse, widow or widower, minor dependent children, and under certain conditions, unmarried adult children with disabilities may also be eligible for burial. Eligible spouses and children may be buried even if they predecease the Veteran.     

Members of the reserve components of the armed forces who die while on active duty or who die while on training duty, or were eligible for retired pay, may also be eligible for burial. 

 

DEDICATION 

The unveiling of the monument in Inverness was on JANUARY 20, 2018.  Located almost in the center of town in a great little city.  It was voted into greatness by and designated a “Gateway Community” by the Florida Trail Association. 

Since 1995, Inverness has been recognized as a Tree City USA by the National Arbor Day Foundation and the US Forest Service. In 2009, Inverness was named “City of the Year” by the Forty and Eight, a national veterans’ organization.   

Incredible, as a population under 8000 but always something to do and a very active town, something going on, concerts and the likes with a fair amount of space there is always a seat at the table in some great little eating spots. Lots of mom and pop places with great food.  It is also one of the fastest growing communities in Florida with all kinds of great things soon to happen.

The City of Inverness designed and built the park for the statues that we donated, it’s really a  major city event, their show and we couldn’t agree more about how well the presentation went .   For the first time in thirty-five years of doing this work for the recognition of our military, our team, Ellie, Alan, and David can sit back and relax knowing the work we did will be appreciated and acceptable to all.  I am proud of our teams effort and closure, and we thank humbly the City of Inverness.  The statues location was paramount to our initial plans for public acceptance and makes the representation easily available to the public. 




THE PROGRAM

•  Greetings by the Mayor of Inverness - Bob Plaisted
•  City Council - Hepfer, Hinkle, Mcbride, Bega, and Ryan
•  Invocation by the City Chaplain Stan Beach
•  Pledge of Allegiance - Cabot McBride
•  National Anthem - Angela Vick
•  Flag Presentation - Ken Hinkle and Junior Marines
•  “Proud to be an American”   Videotron - Lee Greenwood
•  Speaker - Al  Zimmerman, Viet Nam Distinguished Helicopter Pilot 
•  Memorial Team - Ms. Ellie Scarfone,   President and Introduced our team David Troup and Alan Jacobson
•  Sculptor Artist - Scott Stearman
•  Closing Remarks - 


CONVERSATIONS OVERHEARD  —  

-- Ellie Scarfone said:   “This is incredibly impressive, I had originally thought it should go to Liberty Park because the 9/11 memorial is there and it’s a larger, more open space”.  “But with the proposed changes the city made to his area, this makes much better sense.   

-- Frank DeGiovanni:  “ Sometimes it’s wonderful that things don’t go the way we plan them”.   Look what we have here.  Frank DiGiovanni - “I’m humbled, moved, blown away,” DiGiovanni said at the unveiling. “This is an incredible presentation of the effects of war, and these are lifelike, real-life people brought from the battlefield to Inverness in a memorialized manner. .   

-- Alan Jacobson Interceded:  “Yes, patience, cooperation, and with a little divine guidance, and lots of sheer grit at times,   we have exceeded our own expectations”.


Meet The ARTIST....SCOTT STEARMAN


Everyday, we all have the opportunity to answer the question, “What is in my hand?” For me, the answers lie in the tools of my trade. The ideas, clay, calipers, and shapers all hold the secret to communicating with people I will never meet. I want the message to endure long after I am gone. I want the message to speak the eternal truths to a culture that needs reminding.


Scott Stearman pointing to the statues and in particular the helmet worn by Sgt. Amy Perkins with pictures of her children and her fiancé who unfortunately did not make it home from the war zone and was laid to rest.  The detail in the statues are true to the time the era and the place and come alive when you take the time to see them.

Such is the life of a sculpture. The clay model sits in front of me on the table, life ever so slowly coming to the figures as I shape the details, hour upon hour.  It’s time consuming, tedious work.  This model will eventually be formed into to a finished piece. But the soul is captured here, in his hands while the clay is still workable. My studio is tucked into the side of a small hill in the trees of Woodland Park, Colorado. The setting alone is a source of inspiration for me. Larger hands are actually at work, guiding my own to produce something that I hope will endure. It’s a simple equation— Faith in, faith out.


MY FRIEND IS A SCULPTOR
by Kelley Leigh

When my friend Scott starts to tell a story, a chatty room gets quiet. His stories are witty, drawn out patiently, and worth hearing. He’s like big ole’ Grizzly Adams, Will Rogers, and your favorite cousin, all wrapped together. 

A few years ago, one of my sons described Scott as a “Santa in summer.” If that’s true, then Santa lives in a big-timber log house in the mountains and does road trips on a huge yellow motorcycle with his wife Hermine.

People listen to Scott. And, Scott leans in to listen to people. That is probably why he’s so outstanding at what he does. Scott Stearman is a sculptor. He tells his stories in bronze.

Bronze sculptures are timeless containers for our collective stories. What sculptures capture in the present, they continue to speak long into the ages. Bronzes outlive the generations that birth them. They preside over public places and whisper their history into the present. Like no other artform, they withstand the weather of time, and tirelessly ask the future to pause and remember.

Scott’s studio and partner foundry are here in Colorado, but his work permanently stands and whispers in places like universities, city squares, military memorials, hospitals, financial institutions — all over the country.

One of my favorite things about Scott’s work is the layers of detailed symbolism he includes. It’s like playing “I Spy” to find the embedded messages.

For instance, one of his military sculpture includes details only a soldier will notice. This is the sculpture for the Inverness Service Memorial

  • A wristwatch set to 9:11 as a nod to the New York terrorist attacks.
  • A picture of a soldier’s fiance’ tucked in a helmet.
  • A metal feather taken from a statute ripped down from Sadam Hussein’s palace — placed on the ground under a boot, in      symbol of defeat.
  • A right shoulder empty of gear, and one knee-pad on a right-knee, for a rifleman’s clear shot.
  • A wedding ring quietly speaking it’s promise to someone back home.

The stories embedded in his work are rich and varied. And he continues to cover new territory with his sculpture. We’ll hear more about Scott as his next projects unfold and more stories are told.  This is what I wrote, in black Sharpie marker, on a locker door in Scott’s studio.

“In this space, our friend shows us life. When he creates with clay, he makes something from nothing, truth from dirt, beauty from earth. He points us to our creator.” True that.

 

A CUP…IN HIS NAME  —  Many years ago I was approached by a compassionate ministry organization with the request that I create a new sculpture that could represent their work. My goal was to sculpt a piece that could could tell their story but also represent the story of compassion that is present in every group who is stepping into that hard place.

The motivation for a design can come from many different places.  

In the mid 1980s a lot of us remember that the famine in Africa held our attention. Every night on the evening news we saw graphic examples of extreme human need. Speeches were given, money was raised and everyone sang “We Are The World.”

Eventually, the images faded and lost their edge,  the money was dispersed, and the song felt old.
For most of us, the memory is dull and the movies, in our mind have long been traded for new ones.  But everyday…somewhere in this world  one scene replays…as if the author of human suffering constantly rehearses his dark drama.

They’re  always there…these hands…reaching a scoop of rice…a bit of bread… a cup of water…so simple “And whoever gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.” Matthew 10:42

 Everyday, we all have the opportunity to answer the question, “What is in my hand?” For me, the answers lie in the tools of my trade. The ideas, clay, calipers, and shapers all hold the secret to communicating with people I will never meet. I want the message to endure long after I am gone. I want the message to speak the eternal truths to a culture that needs reminding. 


RECOGNITION
The first of these two plaques are in recognition for those three names at the bottom of the plaque,  whose direction brought the statues and artistry of Scott Stearman, the insight and the vision of City Manager Frank DiGiovanni  that brought about this park and Memorial. We humbly thank the people, the incredible collaboration with the loving Citizens of Inverness Florida, the Mayoral and City Government leaders and most of all those represented by this Memorial …  the Soldiers

THE MEMORIAL FOUNDATION

Ellie Scarfone       Al Jacobson      David Troup

The Second of these two plaques names the Wonderful Staff and City Government of 
Inverness Florida, voted one of the best small towns in the US to live in.


MORE PICTURES OF THE DEDICATION MAY BE FOUND AT

http://aljacobs.smugmug.com


 A POET IS BORN -  CONTINUED

Not exactly a Poet Laureate more like a Poet Lariat since some would like to hang me…

10/21/2021   aljacobsladder.com