Insights > Chalmette employees honor veterans through hard work, commitment
Chalmette employees honor veterans through hard work, commitment
No one has to tell Chalmette Network employees to remember Pearl Harbor!
After watching the Pearl Harbor Memorial in Chalmette fall into disrepair since Katrina, Chalmette Network employees have taken it upon themselves to maintain the memorial as a way to honor the nation's veterans.
And while the employees haven't sought any recognition, their efforts have attracted the attention of the media and the St. Bernard Parish government as well as fans on social media.
"Most of us pass by the memorial every day, and we saw how it was being neglected," Kim Landry, service operator in the Chalmette office, said. "People grew up here and remember going to the memorial with their families.
"So we got together and decided on our own to clean it up in time for the Fourth of July weekend. We wanted the veterans to know they were not forgotten, that we do remember their sacrifices and the sacrifices made by their families."
It took a team of 13 employees more than eight hours over the course of two days to clear out the vegetation that had overtaken the site and make the memorial something to be proud of again.
They started attracting attention the first day they were at the site. "One of our guys told a parish employee what we were trying to accomplish, and he wanted to pitch in," Curtis Navis, operations coordinator, said.
That brought their work to the attention of parish officials, who posted photos of the Entergy volunteers on its Facebook page. Parish officials also shared the photos with the St. Bernard Voice newspaper, which publicized the volunteers' work.
"We didn't want any recognition," Landry said. "It just started happening."
While she downplays her role, the idea of cleaning up the memorial originated with Landry, Navis said.
"These guys were so willing to help. There was no hesitation on their part, and that's why I think it was all of us together," Landry said.
The same team will continue maintaining the memorial for the foreseeable future, and for the right reasons.
"Hopefully, it will make the veterans feel good about the service they've given to our country, that it really does mean something to us," Landry said.