Building a Monument to First Responders

Archive for December, 2010

Introducing our local Monumental Partners

The Village of Oak Lawn,  Oak Lawn Police Department,  Oak Lawn Fire Department,  Department of Public Works, Local 150 International Union of Operating Engineers and the Oak Lawn Rotary Club have partnered together to do what it takes to make this the best monument to first responders in the midwest. There are other participants in this project who are not local who will be featured at a later date. In the days ahead, we’ll highlight the contributions of each of these organizations. Today, we’re just introducing our local monumental team.

Your Local Monumental Team

Over 1,500 Hits

Last night we had our 1,500th visitor to our blog! Thanks for viewing, sharing and being as excited about this project as we are. Please tell your friends!

What have other communities done?

Monument in Atlantic Highlands, NJ - Photo from (see link below)

Click the links to see the sculptures:

Atlantic Highlands, NJ
Jacksonville, NC
Palm Beach Gardens, FL – Proposed Monument
Jersey City, NJ
Lafayette, LA

Channel 4 Coverage of the Caravan’s Arrival

Thanks to Carl for sharing the video!

Christmas Rumor?

There are rumors today that our driver is really from the North Pole and not Fennville, MI.... Can anyone confirm this?

Lt. Art Clark talks about our Monumental Project

An interview with Lt. Art Clark, of the Oak Lawn Police Department.  Art talks about his idea for the project and his vision for the Monument.

Donation Inquiries

We are very humbled by the many individuals who have contacted us with a desire to make donations to this project. Our formal fund-raising drive will begin after the Holidays. For now, inquiries on how to donate can be sent to the Treasurer of the Oak Lawn Rotary Club at The outpouring of support from the community is much welcomed and we are extremely grateful.  Thank you very much, and please continue to watch this space for more opportunities for getting involved in our Monumental Project.

Monumental Beam Facts

Beams from the WTC will be used in Oak Lawn's Monument

Just how big are these beams? They’re HUGE. They’re so big that special permits were necessary in order to cross bridges on the way back to Oak Lawn.  Here are the details straight from the Port Authority of NY & NJ:

I-0050 192″ long x 35″ wide x 26″ high – 2722 lbs
I-0052 192″ long x 16″ wide x 8.5″ high – 1687 lbs
I-163 300″ long x 48″ wide x 45″ high – 13,200lbs
I-165 252″ long x 12″ wide x 41″ high – 7,500lbs

Beams from the WTC will be used in Oak Lawn's Monument

Heavy beams required special permits

Great Press on our Monumental Move

The Caravan with the WTC beams arrives in Oak Lawn

Thanks to for a great write-up with video. Lorraine is very dedicated. Check it out!

OakLawn.Patch.Com has a great write-up with video on our Monumental Project

Sweet Home Oak Lawn!

WTC Beams up close

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***UPDATED Arrival Details***Come on Down!****3:30 ETA***

Updated 3:16 pm:  It won’t be long now… they left the South Holland Oasis about 15 min ago.  Thanks to the Chamber of Commerce attendees and Rotarians, Carl from Channel 4 and Lorraine from who were out there freezing with me and waiting!

Updated 12:59 pm: “They have just gone through South Bend and are expecting to be at the South Holland Oasis about 1:30 – 1:45 pm.”  This would bring them to Oak Lawn about 20-30 minutes later. 

Updated 11:50 a.m. – Here’s the route they’re taking off of the expressway: “I just spoke with them and they are planning on exiting (294) at 127th Street and coming down Cicero to 95th.  We will have them turn northbound on 52nd to Oak and then to the front of the Village Hall before proceeding to Beatty for Storage.”

If people want to know where to gather, be at the Oak Lawn Metra Station around 1:10-2:15.


Hi everyone! The estimated arrival time is in the 1:10 to 2:15  time line. The Patriot Guard will be gathering at the South Holland Toll Plaza (I-80/294) to escort the caravan along the final leg. There may be other official vehicles joining the caravan to Oak Lawn.

Village Manager Deetjen invites all interested parties to assemble at the Oak Lawn Metra Station near Beatty Lumber around 1:30. The Parking Garage will be available and free of charge. The beams will be moved to a temporary storage facility at this location. The caravan will arrive sometime between 1:15 and 2:15. We will tighten up the arrival time as we are able.

Please try to be there to see this once in a lifetime event!

Our awsome Caravan Driver: Mr. Dale Tilma

Dale Tilma, of Tilma Service, Fennville, MI

Dale Tilma, of Tilma Service, Fennville, MI

Dale Tilma, of Tilma Service, Fennville, MI - Great Job! Thanks for getting the beams back so quickly!

***WTC Beams arriving Oak Lawn TODAY- Early Afternoon Estimate***

Watch for updates this morning on details. The beams should arrive in Oak Lawn early to mid-afternoon. The convoy is just outside Toledo, Ohio.

The Long and Winding Road – Oak Lawn’s Monumental Move

The beams have traveled over 400 miles and are bedded down in eastern Ohio.  Weather permitting, they may arrive before Saturday’s estimated time.  Check back mid-morning for an estimated time and more details.

Taken earlier today: The Beams and their Noble Escort

WTC beams ready for the trip to Oak Lawn

The WTC beams are loaded and the Oak Lawn Police and Fire vehicles prepare to escort the beams home to Oak Lawn

WTC beams ready for the trip to Oak Lawn

WLS-AM 890 has our Monumental Move on its website

Read about our Monumental Move on WLS-AM 890′s site:

Monumental Banner


Here’s the banner for the truck being attached. It reflects the logos of all the organizations involved: Village of Oak Lawn, Oak Lawn Fire Department, Oak Lawn Police Department, Oak Lawn Public Works, Local 150, and the Oak Lawn Rotary Club.

Our Monumental Project is on Channel 2′s Website

You might have to cut and paste this link in your browser to see it for now:

WTC Beams on the Monumental Move to Oak Lawn!

With the beams safely secured, our Monument is On The Move!

With the beams safely secured, our Monument is On The Move!

WTC Beams are Loading! Oak Lawn’s Monumental Move Begins!


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It turns out that we’re getting FOUR beams loaded. Great photos guys! Keep them coming!

Photos from NY coming in early morning

Oak Lawn Police Department

We just heard that the truck driver is already at the location and will pick up the beams at 7:30 EST. He is “patiently awaiting the Port Authority.” We hope they come early! They are going to send photos as soon as possible. Check back in the morning.

Oak Lawn Representatives arrive in NYC in preparation of escorting our WTC beams to their new home

Oak Lawn Police Department

We just received a quick note that the representatives from Oak Lawn have arrived safely in NYC and will take delivery of our WTC beams early in the morning. These gentlemen are representatives from the Oak Lawn Fire Department and the Oak Lawn Police department. They will supervise the transfer of beams to the flat bed truck and will escort them to Oak Lawn. Along they way, they will document their journey and invite local police and fire departments to join them in the caravan as they cross country.

This is exciting stuff! We’re all wishing them safe travels. If weather allows, the caravan should be back in Oak Lawn this weekend.

Oak Lawn Fire Department Logo

The Oak Lawn Fire Department is part of our Monumental Move


Oak Lawn Police Department

The Oak Lawn Police Department is part of our Monumental Move

Sculptor Erik Blome’s video presentation to the Village Board

Erik Blome Video presentation
Erik Blome Video presentation

Sculptor Erik Blome's video presentation to the Board

Erik’s short presentation of his work wowed the crowd tonight. It’ll be great to have work of this caliber in our Village for public display.

Erik Blome, Jack Benny sculpture

Erik Blome's work showcased at the Village Board's meeting

Samples of Erik Blome's work

A sample of a sculpture by Erik Blome


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