A memorial to honor fallen emergency medical service providers in Missouri will be built at Missouri Western State University. On April 26, the University’s Board of Governors approved a 99-year lease agreement with the Missouri EMS Memorial Foundation to locate the memorial near Mitchell Avenue, on land where the President’s House once stood.
“Our organization is excited to be working with Missouri Western State University to make this vision become a reality,” said Evan Clark, vice-chairman of the Missouri EMS Memorial Foundation. “To finally have a permanent location to properly honor those members of the Missouri EMS profession who gave the ultimate sacrifice is humbling. St. Joseph was chosen as a viable option due to the city’s rich history and economic stability. Missouri Western was contacted to see if they would have any interest in helping support our organization’s vision and they have been highly dedicated and a pleasure to work with since. This campus has many great things to offer and we loved the idea of being able to have such a prime location. With this memorial’s completion Missouri will be one of only a few states to have tangible locations to honor police, fire, and EMS professionals and give our thin line families a place to remember.”
“Emergency medical service personnel are often called to put themselves at risk while providing life-saving medical care to the sick and injured, and many pay the ultimate price,” said Dr. Robert Vartabedian, Missouri Western’s president. “We are pleased to offer a place to honor the EMS heroes of Missouri on our campus.”
The foundation will be responsible for the construction, maintenance and repairs of the memorial and its landscape. The memorial will be a pavilion approximately 50 feet by 50 feet with flagpoles, benches and stone markers. A Memorial Wall of Honor will feature the names of 27 EMS providers who have died in the line of duty. Those who have faithfully dedicated their lives to EMS will also be honored, with names engraved in Service Walls flanking the Memorial Wall of Honor, thus watching over their fallen brothers and sisters. The foundation plans to hold a memorial ceremony at the site once a year.
The memorial will be visible from Mitchell Avenue and accessible from a parking lot on the south side of campus.
The foundation is a 501c3 organization and is accepting donations to build the memorial. For more information about the memorial, visit the foundation’s website at moemsmemorialfoundation.org.
Missouri Western State University is a comprehensive regional university providing a blend of traditional liberal arts and professional degree programs. The university offers student-centered, high quality instruction that focuses on experience-based learning, community service, and state-of-the-art technology. Missouri Western is located in St. Joseph, Mo., and is committed to the educational, economic, cultural and social development of the region it serves. Visit www.missouriwestern.edu.