Guest Post: Support the Peace Cross
The Greenbelt American Legion is raising money to restore the historic landmark
My name is Josh Marks and I’m an independent veteran advocate. I’m also a member of LCpl Robert Deane Marine Corps League Detachment 770 as a Life Associate Member in Mount Airy Maryland and American Legion Francis Scott Key Squadron 11 as a Son of the Legion American. I involve myself in veterans issues on my own volition and not act on behalf of any Veteran Service Organization. It is in this capacity I contact you today. I am part of a movement in seeking donors to help fund the restoration of the Peace Cross in Bladensburg, Maryland.
The Peace Cross Memorial was erected 1919 and dedicated in 1925 in honor of World War I servicemen who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. The Cross was originally built on private property and later came to the state through eminent domain, which built a traffic circle around it. Four years ago, legal actions were filed to take it down due to religious objectors. On June 20, 2019, in a landmark decision, the U.S. Supreme Court voted 7-2 to allow a Veteran’s memorial cross to continue to stand on public land in Maryland.
The 40-foot-tall monument standing at the intersections of Bladensburg Road, Baltimore Avenue, and Annapolis Road in Bladensburg, Maryland, serves as a reminder of the 49 residents who died in World War I. This monument, commonly referred to as the Peace Cross, is owned by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, Department of Parks and Recreation in Prince George’s County which has embarked on a mission to restore it.
To support fundraising efforts for the Peace Cross’ restoration, we are seeking donor friendly individuals businesses and advocates familiar with Peace Cross, it's history, its significance to the State of Maryland and our veteran constituency to save their legacies into perpetuity. There is no minimum denomination limit and the donations are being directed to the Greenbelt American Legion Post 136 in care of Commander and Maryland Veteran Commissioner Mike Moore. The American Legion Post 136 and the American Legion Department of Maryland, veteran service organizations and independent veteran advocates are working to fundraise and solicit citizens, veterans service organizations and businesses for tax deductible donations . With the help of Governor Hogan, the Park and Planning Foundation has received financial commitments from the state totaling $640,000 of the needed $1 million.
Greenbelt Post 136 and the Marine Corps League have been leaders in generating community support to keep and restore Peace Cross. To date, Post 136 has received significant organizational gifts coming from the Gold Star Mothers of Maryland, the Fleet Reserve Association, P.G. Elks Lodge 1778, the Laurel American Legion Post 60, Greenbelt SAL Squadron 136, Rolling Thunder Maryland Chapter 1, Hogs and Heroes, Inc., Bricklayers International Union and Bricklayers Local #1, which serves Maryland, D.C. and Virginia. Several individuals have donated very generous gifts, as well.
If concerned citizens, Maryland businesses and other veteran service organizations would like to make a tax deductible donation to help save this important piece of Maryland history, please send your donation to:
Greenbelt American Legion Post 136
Greenbelt, MD 20770
Attn: Commander Mike Moore
Please note there is no minimum on any tax deductible donation. When remitting your donation, please put on your donation check: "Peace Cross Restoration". The recipient is a 501 (c) 3 19 corporation and can provide a W9 for business donations if requested. Should anyone have any questions, please email me at Hunter1061@yahoo.com.
Please help us restore Peace Cross. These much-needed resources will serve to keep alive the memory of those 49 Maryland veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation in World War I.
Semper Fi / For God and Country,
Independent Veteran Advocate