Manteca has a memorial to those from the greater community who gave their lives while serving America in wartime.
It is a low-key affair underscored by the fact not many seem to be aware of its existence.
The memorial is at the base of the flagpole in the courtyard of the Manteca Library at 320 Center St. It consists of a series of bronze plaques listing the fallen from within the Manteca Unified School District boundaries in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.
On rare occasions ceremonies built around Memorial Day or Veterans Day have been conducted there.
At one time there was a call to relocate the plaques to a more visible site at Library Park. City leaders also toyed with an idea to have them incorporated with a reflecting pool and the flags of the various branches of the service on a city-owned property off Daniels Street across from Big League Dreams when a proposed development schematic created a long and fairly wide median.
Then a few years back, the idea was floated to possibly move them to the Manteca Veterans Center on Moffat Boulevard after it was built.
A higher profile location might be nice, but the bottom line is we should never forget the sacrifice made on our behalf and future generations to come.
Now that the wrought iron fence is in place to secure the courtyard from homeless vandals, the Manteca Garden Club is discussing ways with the library staff and city to beautify the area.
It might be the appropriate time for others to step up and give the memorial to the fallen some tender loving care. The plaques are tarnished. The lights designed to shine on them through the dark of night haven’t worked for years. There are unfortunately names to be noted of those that have fallen from Manteca and Lathrop in the Global War on Terror yet to be memorialized.
One way of drawing more attention to the fallen and their sacrifices might be to illuminate the flag so it can fly at night.
It’s one of numerous “little touches” that community-based organizations could take on to make Manteca better one endeavor at a time.