Urge the P.C. crowd to do the right thing and put the statue inside the Duluth Terminal opposite Joe Gomer’s.

You all might just remember the story below and if you donated money or energy to this effort, you should consider yourself the potential victim of a scam by the Duluth Public Arts commission.  Word came out today that the statue honoring David Wheat might be placed OUTSIDE Duluth’s new Taj Mahal of an airport instead of inside as originally intended.  From what I understand, there were concerns that it didn’t meet the “Art” committee’s agenda and might offend some to see a statue of a POW inside the airport.  I’d encourage everyone to contact Donnie Ness and let your thoughts be known…a statue of a war hero should not be placed outside on a curb based on a notion that it might “offend” some libtard.  Just how offended do you think David Wheat was being imprisoned in some cage in Viet Nam for 7 1/2 years?

Advocates raise money for statue honoring David Wheat, POW/MIAs of Vietnam War

By Brady Slater at 11:04 p.m.

Duluth’s statue of Tuskegee Airman Joseph Gomer might have a companion by early next year. The Northland Veteran Services Committee has raised enough of its goal to say a statue of David Wheat will come to fruition.

If everything goes as planned, the organization would like to dedicate the statue in February 2015 — the 42nd anniversary of Wheat’s release after 7½ years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam.

“He’s a living testament to the human spirit,” said John Marshall of the committee. “To survive what he did is not something most people can fathom.”

To date, the committee has raised more than $44,000, much of it coming at a dinner and fundraiser May 3 at the American Legion West Duluth Post 71.

Mike Forsman attended the event as a representative of the St. Louis County Board. The commissioners recommended a $10,000 donation to the project, which St. Louis County administrators approved in the form of a grant.

“The initial movement started with Commissioner (Pete) Stauber,” said Forsman, a veteran and the 4th District commissioner who lives in Ely. “I was supportive of it, and the administration obviously believed in the cause.”

Wheat was not available for this story because of an out-of-town family matter. Current drawings of the statue by local artist Tim Cleary, who also sculpted the Gomer monument, portray Wheat in his prison clothes with his hands bound behind his back.

Forsman said Wheat was given the option of appearing in the statue wearing his Navy commander’s uniform, but that Wheat preferred the piece to honor all POWS and those still missing in action.

Marshall said there will be a panel honoring the names of all St. Louis County’s POW/MIAs, as well as a panel honoring $5,000 donations and a final panel telling Wheat’s story in brief.

Wheat was imprisoned in Hoa Lo Prison — the infamous “Hanoi Hilton” — after the jet aircraft he was in was shot down. The pilot later died of injuries suffered during the ejection. Wheat, a radar intercept officer, was taken prisoner and endured one of the longest POW terms on record before his release.

“His sacrifice is significant,” said Marshall, who called Wheat a mentor and said he’s pleased to honor him while he’s alive, just as Gomer was with his statue’s unveiling before his death. “We’ve got to create moments and not just memorials. That’s something Durbin Keeney used to tell me all the time.”

Keeney was the longtime Northland veterans’ advocate who died earlier this month. He had been working on the Wheat project before his death.

Forsman believes in the power of monuments to build bridges into the future.

“It’s important, so future generations can look and know the history,” he said. “You can see a representation and chills go up and down most patriots’ spines. They are the reason we have what we have. Without that visual reference, sometimes people don’t take the time to get to know things.”

Marshall said he is still working on a location for the Wheat statue. The Gomer statue is situated at the Duluth International Airport.

“He is such a humble man,” Marshall said of Wheat. “He’s so kind and so genuine. Just a remarkable guy.”

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