Memorial Park is my favorite place in Omaha

I really love Memorial Park. The park, situated on 60th street between Dodge and Underwood, holds a very special place in my heart. It is not only important to me because of the memories I’ve made and will continue to make, it is also home to a monument that my awesome stepfather helped to restore.

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C’mon flag, wave! Or, actually, do whatever you want – you’re great!

I spent three years living in the Country Club neighborhood while attending UNO. I went walking and/or jogging in the area literally almost everyday and would almost always find myself wandering up to Memorial Park. I would spend evenings walking the grassy spaces, running the steps in front of the memorial, strolling the rose garden, or admiring the names of those who had given their lives to our country. This park was the place where I would reflect on my past, work out my present, and daydream about my future.

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Of course I had to take my engagement pictures at Memorial Park!  Pardon the blur, this is a screenshot from my Instagram page 🙂

I feel an even stronger connection to the park now because it is a spot that will always remind me of and bond me to my stepfather Bill Henry. Bill was a huge advocate for veterans and the military and he loved Memorial Park. He has a lasting legacy at the park as one of the members of the restoration committee for the monument dedicated to those who lost their lives in the Korean and Vietnam wars.

Bill was a veteran of the Vietnam War and dedicated his life to our country and our veterans. After retiring from the post office in 2012, he spent countless hours working hard for those who had given their lives for their country. As the founding member of the Nebraska chapter of The Missing in America Project, Bill worked with funeral homes, cemeteries, and even local government to make sure there was a friend and a respectful resting place for the cremains of forgotten or family-less veterans.

Bill was really doing what he loved when he was fatally injured in a motorcycle accident while escorting unclaimed cremains to Arlington National Cemetery. He spent his life, up to his final days, serving our country and its veterans. Bill Henry was an incredible man and I feel extremely grateful that such a special place in Omaha will forever bear his name. His legacy of respect and love for our country’s finest lives on at Memorial Park.

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This proudly sat in my mom and Bill’s bedroom. People signed their thanks for his hard work on the monument.

Even without the awesome connection to Bill that the park grants me, Memorial Park truly feels like a magical place.

From Dodge Street, my eyes are always drawn to the long, meticulously manicured front lawn leading up to the majestic monuments. The view from the top of the hill is amazing – out over the trees towards the Midtown neighborhoods, my alma mater’s clock tower, and the beautiful steeple of St. Margaret Mary’s. The winding pedestrian bridge linking the park to the south side of Dodge adds an extra bit of drama to an already attractive landscape.

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What. A. View.

Its large size, walking paths (a trip around and throughout the park is 3.6 miles!), gorgeous rose garden, children’s playground, and of course the honorable memorials, makes Memorial Park a must-see destination in Omaha.

Memorial Park 

6005 Underwood Ave, Omaha, NE 68132

heart-sign-offSarah

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This post is dedicated to Bill Henry.  Love you, Bill! 

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