Cumberland Times-News

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February 2, 2013

W.Va. Veterans Memorial lights in disrepair

Sculptor blames state for lack of maintenance

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The sculptor who designed the West Virginia Veterans Memorial more than two decades ago said he’s disappointed the state has allowed the monument’s lights to fall into disrepair.

P. Joseph Mullins said the lighting at the memorial at the state Capitol complex hasn’t worked for months and he blames “structural problems” for the recent issues.

“There is no organization that has specific maintenance responsibilities for the memorial,” he told the Charleston Daily Mail. “This thing ought to be maintained if the parking garage goes to hell. ... I’m bothered as an artist. I’m bothered as a veteran. I’m bothered as a state citizen.”

Construction of the $4 million memorial began in 1990 and was completed in 1999. It includes four limestone monoliths and the black granite facings engraved with the names of more than 10,000 West Virginia veterans killed in combat during the 20th Century.

Mullins, who served in the Army in the early 1960s, designed the memorial from the ground up, picking the stones for the walkways, and even made sure they matched the stones in the bottom of the memorial’s reflecting pool. He also developed a lighting plan for the monument.

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