In 1928, the monument dedicated to World War I veterans was placed in front of the Bayside’s LIRR train station on Bell Boulevard but by 1974 it was moved to Golden Park. Due to vandalism, the obelisk was relocated again in 1983 to the northeast corner of Northern Boulevard and the Clearview Expressway.
“This thing should be right back where it started from. Where people can see it and it can be a part of the community and be honored. For whatever reason it got moved. It’s time for it to come back home and be a part of the community,” Paul DiBenedetto, who started the petition alongside Cara Quinones and Gregg Sullivan, told QNS. “These people, they died for their country. For us to just forget about them when someone took the great undertaking of costs and planning so they could honors the veteran … it seems as if they were forgotten.”
The petition has solicited 132 supporters since last week, and the goal is to reach 250 signatures.
Residents are concerned that the obelisk is overlooked in its current location and no longer serves its purpose as a memorial.
“I rarely sign petitions, but I think this one is worthwhile. It’s important to have a constant reminder of the ultimate sacrifice made by too many of our military personnel and their families. The Bayside Memorial Obelisk now stands on the northeast corner of Northern Blvd at the Clearview Expressway where there is little foot traffic and limited visibility to passing vehicular traffic,” Wayne Cohen wrote on the petition website.
“Returning it to its original location will place it in the center of the Village of Bayside, where we can proudly pay our respect to our fallen heroes. I fully support the move,” said another supporter.
DiBenedetto hopes to receive a grant from the New York City Department of Transportation by next year, in order to move the obelisk back to its original location.
To sign the petition in support of Bayside’s obelisk, visit the website for more information.